Reframing frailty as a long-term condition

This learning module has been accredited by the Royal College of Nursing and was last updated in 2019.

All modules are subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software.

Duration: 02:00:00 Type: CPD modules Level: Qualified Nurses


Helen Lyndon, NIHR clinical academic doctoral research fellow/nurse consultant older people, Cornwall Partnership Foundation NHS Trust/Plymouth University.
Clifford Kilgore, Nurse consultant intermediate care/older people, Dorset HealthCare University NHS Foundation Trust.

Short description

This module defines frailty as a clinical syndrome that focuses on loss of reserve, energy and wellbeing. The nurse's role as key worker and care co-ordinator during all stages of the frailty trajectory is discussed.

Detailed description

Frailty is a clinical syndrome that focuses on loss of reserve, energy and wellbeing. Older people with frailty tend to present late and often in crisis to health and care services so their care may be hospital-based, episodic and unplanned. Frailty should be reframed as a long-term condition that can be managed proactively in primary and community settings by supported self-management and person-centred care. Nurses play a vital role as key workers and care co-ordinators and provide support for patients and carers at all stages of the frailty trajectory.


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