The Regional Hospital Mullingar has introduced a Frailty Intervention Team (MFIT) for patients aged over 75 years attending their Emergency Department. It is facilitated, promoted and supported by Ireland East Hospital Group (IEHG)
How the team works
At triage, patients are screened for frailty and if found to be frail a Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment (CGA) is completed and appropriate priority referrals are made to Health and Social Care Professionals in the hospital and in the community.
Benefits so far
· Discharges in first 7 days of care rose by 22%
· Discharges to convalescence reduced by half
· Discharges to Long Term Care reduced by 39%
· Discharges home increased by 22%
· Due to improved communication between hospital and community staff, there is now a seamless transition for our frail older patients moving from the acute hospital to the community and vice versa
Unique features of the programme include:
· Acute hospital and community staff working together to provide the best service for frail older adults
· Seamless communication between hospital & community staff when arranging care of frail patients
· Admissions avoided, length of stay reduced, increased discharges to home, reducing the use of convalescence which has a financial saving and significant benefits to the care of the patient.
The development of frailty education and training booklet for staff has facilitated improved management of our older patients and families reported that their family members were up, dressed and moving every day and as a result their conditions improved more rapidly psychologically and physically.
Frail patients have presented with dysphagia and malnutrition and as a result the hospital has broadened the selection of foods available to address this.
Feedback from patients and staff both before and after the introduction of MFIT has enabled the design of a programme to meet the needs of frail older patients attending the Regional Hospital Mullingar and the programme has supported shared learning across the IEHG.