Blackburn Market hosts Falls Awareness Week stall

Published Thursday 12 June 2014 at 11:42

Blackburn Market will play host to a market stall on Friday, June 20 to provide older people with advice on how to reduce the risk of falls.

The stall is being set up by Blackburn with Darwen Council in partnership with Age UK Blackburn with Darwen, Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust and Choice Mobility as part of National Falls Awareness Week, which runs from June 16-20. It is hoped the information available will help some residents avoid the debilitating effects that can follow after a fall.

Falls are a major cause of injury and death among the over 65s and account for more than 50% of hospital admissions for accidental injury across the country. Statistics show that there are about 7000 falls a year in Blackburn with Darwen.

Older people’s fear of falling has also been linked to becoming both lonely and social isolated, which in turn has a huge impact on their health and wellbeing.

At the stall in the main market hall, near the Church Street entrance, people will be able to find out more about the Council’s falls prevention service which provides balance and mobility classes, personal assessment and exercise plans, a home exercise programme and community based sessions for 16 weeks including regular health education sessions.

Choice Mobility will also be providing free new rubber tips for walking sticks and other mobility aids.

Visitors will also be able to find out more about services provided by Age UK Blackburn with Darwen and also the Council’s Decent and Safe Homes (DASH) Scheme, which  includes home maintenance, handyperson, energy efficiency, home safety and housing services.

Other activities across Falls Prevention Week include information sessions from the Council’s falls prevention team at Derwent Hall, Darwen on Wednesday and Willow Gardens independent retirement living complex.

Councillor Mohammed Khan, Executive Member for Health and Adult Social Care, said:

“Having a fall or having a fear of falling can have a terrible effect on older people. The consequences of a fall in later life can be devastating, both physically and emotionally. And as well as the terrible consequences for the individual, falls cost public services millions to treat.

“The good news is that a lot can be done to help. Our market stall will have some vital information and people should always make sure to check on vulnerable elderly people to see if they are at risk of falling. Little things like making sure their carpets are safe, their house is well lit and they wearing the right footwear can all help cut the risk. It would be virtually impossible to stop every single fall but I believe that by working together with our partners and the community, we can reduce the number.”

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