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Health Research Board (HRB) Applied Partnership Award

“Enhancing the reach and sustainability of an integrated falls prevention pathway”

Dr Sheena McHugh is leading a Health Research Board Applied Partnership Award (APA) 2018 to investigate the sustainability of an integrated care pathway for falls-prevention. She is working with partners from the Cork Kerry Community Healthcare Falls Prevention Service in the Health Service Executive (HSE). This initiative is one example of an integrated care pathway in the National Integrated Care Programme for Older People. The service provides access to multifactorial assessment for older people in Cork city and county in dedicated falls risk assessment clinics. Falls are one of the most serious and common threats to older people. It is possible to reduce the risk of falls by assessing individuals’ risk factors and providing appropriate treatment if necessary.

The research aims to identify any gaps or delays in the provision of treatment to older people at risk of falls and to assess the scalability of the Integrated Falls Prevention Pathway in order to identify factors required for its future scale-up.

Outputs to date:

  • UK Implementation Science Research Conference 2020. Oral presentation, “A qualitative study to examine the acceptability, appropriateness and feasibility of implementing an integrated falls prevention pathway for older people” Presenter Susan Calnan.
  • AFFINITY National Falls and Bone Health Symposium 2019. Poster presentation, “An Evaluation of the Implementation of an Integrated Falls and Fractures Pathway” Presenter Rebecca Dennehy.
  • Irish Gerontology Society 2019. Oral presentation, “Investigating the Delivery of Falls Prevention Interventions to Older People Following Multi-Factorial Risk Assessment: A Cross-Sectional Study” Presenter Rebecca Dennehy. 

The project is designed to bring knowledge users and academic researchers together to address a specific need within the Irish health system. Our Project Management Group includes researchers, and clinical and managerial representatives from the Integrated Falls Prevention Pathway.

  • Dr Sheena McHugh, Health Services Researcher, School of Public Health, University College Cork
  • Dr Caragh Flannery, Health Services Researcher, School of Public Health, University College Cork
  • Dr Susan Calnan, Health Services Researcher, School of Public Health, University College Cork
  • Ms Eileen Moriarty, General Manager, Health service Executive Services for Older Persons, Strategy and Planning
  • Dr Patrick Barry, Consultant Physician in Acute Medicine and Geriatric Medicine
  • Dr Kieran O’ Connor, Clinical Director, Mercy University Hospital
  • Mr Spencer Turvey, Cork Kerry Community Healthcare, Health Service Executive
  • Ms Finola Cronin, Pathway Coordinator, Corks Falls Prevention Service
  • Professor John Brown, Professor of Epidemiology and Public Health, School of Public Health
  • Dr Sarah-Jo Sinnott, Assistant Professor, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

For further information on this project please contact Dr Caragh Flannery, School of Public Health, University College Cork at or on 021-4205514.

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ESPRIT Research Group

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