The current spell of sunny weather is an outstanding opportunity to raise The NACC National Dehydration in Older People Awareness week.
This year’s awareness week June 11th -17th is almost upon us, and this a worthwhile opportunity to raise awareness in the health and social care sector.
The Office of National Statistics reported that in 2010 (latest stats available) 155 patients died in hospital from dehydration, and 48 from malnutrition. Dehydrations contributed to another 812 deaths, and malnutrition to a further 31 deaths although these were not listed as the primary cause of death.
In care homes in the period between 2005 and 2009 there were on average 133 deaths from dehydration and 31 from malnutrition. There were also deaths from falls and pressure ulcers some of which may have been preventable by good nutrition and hydration.
Derek Johnson (Immediate Past Chair and originator of this campaign) said
“The figures highlight that dehydration is a greater risk to an older persons’ health and wellbeing
than malnutrition. If we are to help reduce the burden on health and social care services we need to raise the awareness that drinking enough fluid is a vital part of anyone’s care….. and it is so simple to address.”
Ask yourself how much have you drunk today? Next time you visit an elderly or vulnerable person ask them the same question. The answer in both cases is 6 to 8 drinks per day.
Karen Oliver NACC Chair said “This campaign is one we should all get on board with it’s not hard and only requires commonsense with no cost involved to providers, why would you not be involved. “