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How to spot frailty in older people and what emergency nurses can do to improve care

Older people living with frailty tend to present late and often in crisis at the emergency department
Frail older man lying on bed. Older people with frailty tend to present late and often in crisis at the emergency department

Older people living with frailty tend to present late and often in crisis at the emergency department

Picture: iStock

Emergency nurses can play a vital role in providing early interventions and improving care for older patients living with frailty.

Such patients tend to present late, often in crisis, which results in frequently unplanned, episodic, hospital-based care.

But it also means nurses in the emergency department will often encounter people living with frailty – providing an opportunity to make every contact count.

What is frailty?

Frailty is best described as a clinical syndrome involving loss of reserves, energy and well-being . Although it is a

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