Falls in older people
Status Complete
Anticipated publication date June 2013
Process CG
Topic area
  • Injuries, accidents and wounds
  • Public health

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Key events during the development of the guidance

Date Update
7 January 2013

NICE clinical guideline 21 (2004) includes best practice recommendations for healthcare professionals working in community settings on how to assess and prevent falls. The guideline also advises on how to care for people who present at hospital because of a fall, and on what should be done to prevent them from falling again after they return home.

Following a review three years after the guideline’s publication (2007), it was agreed that its recommendations continue to represent best clinical practice for healthcare professionals working in community settings.

Recommendations on preventing falls during hospital stays were not within the remit of the 2004 guideline; therefore, during this review, stakeholders asked NICE to extend its clinical guideline, to include recommendations on the assessment and prevention of falls specifically in inpatient settings, such as hospitals.

NICE has reviewed the available evidence and published its draft recommendations for this specific setting, as part of a public consultation. Registered stakeholders have until Friday 15 February 2013 to submit their feedback on these. Following consultation, all feedback will be considered before the recommendations are finalised. Once published, these will be added to NICE’s existing recommendations in CG21.

As effective falls services require close links between community and inpatient healthcare settings, NICE will develop recommendations on service delivery, as part of its previously announced planned guidance on the assessment and management of comorbidities, long term conditions and complex needs. This will be in addition to NICE’s planned extension of CG21. This is because the components of service delivery for people who have had a fall, or who are at risk of falling, warrant more comprehensive consideration alongside those who have more complex needs. Once confirmed, the expected publication schedule for this planned guidance will be made available on NICE’s website.

The published scope of the guideline has been amended to reflect this.

June 2012

The NCCs may make a focussed call for evidence on specific clinical questions or subquestions, after it has done initial searches. It will be able to make a call at any point during development of the guideline, and stakeholders will usually be given 4weeks to respond. The NCC will approach all registered stakeholders for this evidence. The NCC may not issue any calls for evidence for a guideline if the Guideline Development Group (GDG) feels it is not necessary. In addition, the NCCs will accept relevant confidential data for consideration by the GDG. The Health Economic plan, review questions and search strategies will be available on the website 5 weeks prior to consultation commencing.

30 December 2011

Development of the clinical guideline is under way and is being led by the National Collaborating Centre. The Guideline Development Group meets regularly to oversee and assist the identification, review and synthesis of the evidence, the incorporation of expert consensus opinion and the translation of the evidence into recommendations for practice and audit criteria. Two versions of the guideline are under preparation: a full guideline and a NICE short-form guideline. Please see timescales above for dates of consultation with stakeholders.