Caring for a couple with such different needs can be very challenging at times. Prior to their ill health this couple had travelled extensively around the world and experienced many happy times together. However, J’s Parkinson’s diagnosis and the accompanying frailty meant his mind was active while his body was not.
As winter approaches the nights get longer and the temperature begins to drop. People all over the country start preparing for the cold months ahead, and NHS hospitals begin organising and planning for their busiest time of year, commonly known as ‘winter pressures’. In the extreme winter of 2012/13 there were an estimated 31,100 excess deaths in the UK, and the colder it was, the higher the mortality rate. But what are the challenges facing older people during this chilly season, and why do we see a rise in illness and hospital admissions?