NEW figures have revealed that ambulances were called to more than 7,000 people aged over 65 who suffered a fall in South Derbyshire during the past 12 months.
Dr Buk Dhadda, a GP with Gresleydale Health Centre and governing body member of NHS Southern Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group, issued a plea urging patients to improve their health and ease the pressure on paramedics by taking positive action to stay healthy on their feet.
Around a third of over-65s and half of those over 80 will fall every year, with a total of 7,200 doing so during the past year.
Dr Dhadda said: “Falls not only cause painful injuries but can lead to high anxiety, restricting a person’s independence and quality of life.
“A fractured hip can be one of the most life-changing consequences of a fall.
“Only around one per cent of falls result in a fractured hip for people aged 65 or over. But, of those who do fracture their hip, 30 per cent will die within a year due to a combination of frailty factors, while half will never return to their full level of mobility.
“What is more, falls treatment costs the NHS more than £2.3 billion a year.
“There are many reasons why the risk of falls and fractures increases with age. Falls often happen as a consequence of symptoms of other conditions including weaker bones and muscles, poor vision and reduced mobility.”
Health chiefs are urging people to ‘keep active’ to reduce the risk of falling.
More information is available by visiting www.activederbyshire.co.uk/fallsprevention or by calling Active Derbyshire on 0845 058058.
To download Age UK’s free ‘Staying Steady’ and ‘Healthy Living’ guides, visit www.ageuk.org.uk/falls