About this quality standard

NICE quality standards describe high-priority areas for quality improvement in a defined care or service area. Each standard consists of a prioritised set of specific, concise and measurable statements. NICE quality standards draw on existing NICE or NICE-accredited guidance that provides an underpinning, comprehensive set of recommendations, and are designed to support the measurement of improvement.

Information about how NICE quality standards are developed is available from the NICE website.

The statements in this quality standard have been developed with 2 different quality standards advisory committees. See quality standard advisory committees on the website for details of standing committee 4 members who advised on the 2017 statements in this quality standard. Information on the standing members who advised on the 2015 statements, along with topic experts who joined each of the committees, is available on the quality standard's webpage.

This quality standard has been incorporated into the NICE pathway on falls in older people.

NICE has produced a quality standard service improvement template to help providers make an initial assessment of their service compared with a selection of quality statements. This tool is updated monthly to include new quality standards.

NICE produces guidance, standards and information on commissioning and providing high-quality healthcare, social care, and public health services. We have agreements to provide certain NICE services to Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Decisions on how NICE guidance and other products apply in those countries are made by ministers in the Welsh government, Scottish government, and Northern Ireland Executive. NICE guidance or other products may include references to organisations or people responsible for commissioning or providing care that may be relevant only to England.

Improving outcomes

This quality standard is expected to contribute to improvements in the following outcomes:

  • falls in older people

  • injuries resulting from falls in older people

  • hospital admissions resulting from falls in older people

  • patient safety incidents reported

  • health-related quality of life for older people

  • social care-related quality of life for older people

  • independence of older people

  • mortality in older people resulting from falls and underlying causes.

It is also expected to support delivery of the Department of Health's outcome frameworks:

Resource impact

NICE quality standards should be achievable by local services. The potential resource impact was considered by the quality standards advisory committee for statements 1, 2 and 3, drawing on resource impact work for the source guidance. Organisations are encouraged to use the costing statement for NICE's guideline on falls in older people to help estimate local costs.

Diversity, equality and language

During the development of this quality standard, equality issues were considered and equality assessments are available. Any specific issues identified during development of the quality statements are highlighted in each statement.

Good communication between health, public health and social care practitioners and older people at risk of falling, or who have fallen, is essential. Assessment, interventions, care and support, and the information given about it, should be culturally appropriate. It should also be accessible to people with additional needs such as physical, sensory or learning disabilities, and to people who do not speak or read English. Older people should have access to an interpreter or advocate if needed.

Commissioners and providers should aim to achieve the quality standard in their local context, in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations. Nothing in this quality standard should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with compliance with those duties.

ISBN: 978‑1‑4731‑1128‑8