A COMMUNITY nurse is encouraging care home residents and staff to stay properly hydrated – to help improve their health and reduce hospital admissions.
Gill Roberts, infection prevention and control nurse at North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust, is highlighting to elderly residents the importance of drinking fluids to improve their health and reduce the risk of infections or of having a fall.
Gill is working with Charlotte Grange Residential Care Home in Hartlepool as part of a three month pilot. She has set up themed hydration stations and is carrying out training with staff around the benefits of good hydration.
The number of residents who experience urinary tract infections or have a fall will be recorded during the pilot and analysed after.
Gill said: “The importance of hydration can’t be underestimated.
“Dehydration can lead to symptoms such as headaches and fatigue and poor concentration. It’s vital that staff drink enough so that they are able to provide the best level of care and equally important that residents drink enough to reduce the risk of having a fall or picking up an infection.
“By doing this, we can also help to reduce the amount of residents who are admitted to hospital and prevent the unnecessary use of antibiotics.
“The staff and residents at Charlotte Grange have really embraced this project and are already seeing the benefits.
“Once this pilot is complete I hope to roll this out across more care homes in the area.”