Evidence and Practice

Clinical

Advanced nurse practitioners can lead comprehensive geriatric assessment in acute hospitals

ANPs can lead comprehensive geriatric assessment in acute hospitals

Exploring the role of the ANP in identifying frailty and leading CGA for older people

Older lady hydration

Strategies to prevent dehydration in older people with dementia: a literature review

There is a significant evidence base supporting a range of strategies to improve hydration

What is an older husband’s experience of caring for his wife who has dementia?

What is an older husband’s experience of caring for his wife who has dementia?

In this review, nursing implications are addressed and guidance proposed to offer support

Dietary intake of people with dementia on acute hospital wards

Dietary intake of people with dementia on acute hospital wards

This evaluation acknowledges the whole process of nutritional care for people with dementia

Meaningful engagement between secondary school students and older patients in an acute hospital

Engagement between secondary school students and older patients in an acute hospital

A project promoted meaningful interaction between schoolchildren and older patients

Assessment and provision of continuing healthcare: an integrative literature review

Assessment and provision of continuing healthcare: an integrative literature review

Review of providing continuing healthcare in terms of staff roles, training and competencies

CPD articles

Understanding and managing depression in older people

Understanding and managing depression in older people

Clinicians do not always recognise depression in older people as they attribute symptoms to the ageing process and the effects of failing health. Similarly, older people do not always appreciate that their symptoms relate to their mood. Understanding how depression affects older people can improve access to support, thereby improving overall health and quality of life. To ensure these outcomes we need a workforce with excellent communication skills that supports therapeutic relationships, promotes recognition of symptoms, and enhances assessment, diagnosis, treatment and management.

COPD

Helping people live with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

How nurses can have a positive effect on the lives of people with COPD

Communication

Effective communication with older people

Nurses can overcome communication barriers through thoughtful interventions

Approaches to managing older people using opiates and their risk of dependence

Approaches to managing older people using opiates and their risk of dependence

There is little doubt that opiates have transformed healthcare, particularly in relation to pain management. However, many patients prescribed this type of drug develop problems such as dependency. Although we do not know how many older people have developed such problems due to opiate use we know that some will. It is important for nurses to understand the context in which opiates are used, as well as the specific needs of older people and how to respond to them.

Ethical practice in dementia care

Ethical practice in dementia care

This article draws on a range of case study examples from dementia care and explains how ethical theory can be applied to enhance professional practice. Ethical concepts are critically examined in this context and tensions between them are explored. The article demonstrates how an established ethical framework can assist with application in practice situations. It also argues that cultivating virtues, such as courage and receptivity, is an essential aspect of providing ethical nursing care for people with dementia.

Sexuality and sexual intimacy in later life

Sexuality and sexual intimacy in later life

Sexuality is as important in older age as it is throughout life, and its expression can be positive, empowering, joyful and life-affirming. The concept of sexuality has many dimensions including identity, need and desire, relationships and behaviour, all of which develop through ageing and life experiences. The evidence on all aspects of sexuality in later life tends to focus on biological dysfunction rather than fulfilment, well-being and quality of life, and does not acknowledge the enormous diversity of older people in terms of age, sexualities, ethnicity and culture. However, the evidence base is growing and, in broad terms, what older people want is becoming more clearly articulated. This article acknowledges the current evidence and, building on this, suggests ways in which nurses working in health and social care services can address some of the challenges, enhance their own understanding and skills, and work creatively with older individuals to offer services that help them to live, and end, their lives according to their individual identities, choices and deepest, most personal, priorities.

How to

Hearing loss

How to address the communication needs of older patients with hearing loss

Hearing loss is a common problem in older people and may have a negative effect on their care while in hospital, as well as resulting in significant cost to the NHS. This article outlines the findings of a two-year project in an NHS trust to improve the care of older people with hearing loss. An important outcome of the project was the development of a hearing loss toolkit containing good practice recommendations and tools to help staff in all NHS trusts, and other care settings, implement practical and cost-effective improvements.

Planning

How to use advance care planning in a care home

Admission to a care home is a major event for many individuals and, for some, a time when they may lose their independence. It is at this juncture that they should be given the opportunity to participate in planning their future care. An advance care plan (ACP) is a means for people with capacity to document their preferences for their care and to enable providers to advocate on their behalf. Some people will have lost mental capacity before admission to a care facility, so it is essential for staff to be familiar with the complexities of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 to support residents approaching the end of life. This article outlines the processes of ACP and identifies resources available to support the introduction of ACP into care homes.

Practice question

Picture shows a care home supervisor talking to a resident. Healthcare professionals can help meet the needs of older people approaching the end of life by asking the right questions.

Surprise questions that can improve end of life care

Older people approaching the end of life can be helped by asking the right questions

Push-on mower

Care home residents can benefit from carrying out everyday activities

Safety concerns prevent care home residents doing everyday tasks that benefit them

What is ageism, how can I recognise it and how can I deal with it in my workplace?

Discrimination against older people can mean inferior standards in services that affect them

How do I recognise and treat pain appropriately in a person with dementia?

A tool to help staff manage pain in dementia care uses four simple steps

Experiencs

Older people’s feedback on care

What are the best ways of capturing and drawing on older people’s experiences of care to improve my practice?

Why is future care planning so important for people living with frailty?

Why early conversations about end of life care are essential for people living with frailty

Jobs