Prestigious Dhole-Eddlestone Memorial Prize awarded to ‘Everyday life after a hip fracture: what community-living older adults perceive as most beneficial for their recovery’

14 January 2020

The prestigious Dhole-Eddlestone Memorial Prize has been awarded to the Age and Ageing paper ‘Everyday life after a hip fracture: what community-living older adults perceive as most beneficial for their recovery’. The prize is given annually to the most deserving medical research relating to the needs of older people, published over the last year in the scientific journal of the British Geriatrics Society, Age and Ageing.

The paper, which was published on 26 February 2019, explored the perspectives and experiences of older people on the recovery process following a hip fracture and the things they perceived as most beneficial for their return to everyday life. Researchers from Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences interviewed 19 participants of the SO-HIP trial1 who had recently received rehabilitation after a hip fracture.

The study found that rehabilitation at home, following discharge from inpatient care, was perceived as highly beneficial and supported the recovery of everyday functioning. Researchers also found that a personalised approach in rehabilitation, that focused on resuming the everyday activities that individuals routinely undertook, was key to overcoming the physical and psychological challenges faced by many patients when they returned home.

Additionally, participants of the study highlighted their own willpower, and a positive attitude, as important to their recovery and regaining their ability to perform everyday activities. Emotional support provided by a coach, and sensor technology which tracked and encouraged movement, were also cited as helpful motivators and beneficial in supporting their transition from inpatient rehabilitation to their home.

Margriet Pol PhD, Senior Lecturer and Senior Researcher at the Department of Occupational Therapy at Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, led the study. She commented “We are honoured to receive this prestigious award which recognises the importance of our work. We firmly believe that the recognition of older adults’ experiences and perspectives in the recovery process will help to improve the rehabilitation and quality of life of community-living older adults who undergo geriatric rehabilitation after hip fracture.”

Professor Rowan Harwood, Editor-in-Chief of Age and Ageing, commented: “Hip fracture can be devastating for an older person, but good recovery is possible with excellent medical care and rehabilitation. The judging panel thought that this paper really helped us understand how rehabilitation helps, or why it fails. The authors produced an insightful conceptual model, that we will definitely be using in our own teaching. Age and Ageing publishes research of many different types, and we were pleased to see a rigorous qualitative study win the Dhole-Eddlestone Memorial Prize this year.”

The paper will be presented, and the Dhole-Eddlestone Memorial Prize awarded, at the BGS Spring Meeting, which is being held 1-3 April 2020 in Manchester. Read the full paper ‘Everyday life after a hip fracture: what community-living older adults perceive as most beneficial for their recovery’ here:

The Dhole-Eddlestone Memorial Prize is funded by a legacy from Dr Manindra Kumar Dhole, a BGS member who died in 1977. The prize is so named to commemorate the anniversary of his marriage with Dr Eddlestone. One cash prize of £1,000 is made each year and announced on 14 January, the anniversary of the date of their marriage. Applications are not accepted. The prize goes to ‘the most deserving published work of medical research appertaining to the needs of aged people’, in practice, the paper published in Age and Ageing each calendar year which most impressed the judging panel.

1. The SO-HIP study investigated the application of sensor technology in a rehabilitation program for older people after a hip fracture