Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 29th March 2018.

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Photo of Derek Thomas Derek Thomas Conservative, St Ives

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, if he will provide education and advice on accessing podiatry services to patients considered at risk of falling.

Photo of Caroline Dinenage Caroline Dinenage Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

Public Health England established the National Falls Prevention Coordination Group (NFPCG) in July 2016 in order to lead and coordinate falls prevention at a national level. The Group published a consensus statement in January 2017 which detailed key prevention interventions and strategic approaches to commissioning and a resource pack published in July 2018 aimed at commissioners and providers on falls prevention, bone health and healthy ageing.

The NFPCG noted in its consensus statement that muscle weakness and poor balance are the main risk factors for falls and therefore the resource pack covers advice on preventing falls generally, rather than specifically focusing on access to podiatry services.

The resource pack cites information sources and support for patients. Examples include NHS Choices ‘Are you at risk of falling?’ a simple online test for the user to work out if patients need to discuss their risk of falls with their general practitioner and an NHS England guide ‘A practical guide to healthy ageing’. The NHS England guide provides information on medicines reviews, exercise, preventing falls, general home safety, with tips to help older people stay both physically and mentally fit and independent, and pointers on when to seek medical support and advice.

The consensus statement and resource pack are available at:

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