A hospital consultant who specialises in geriatric medicine has joined our Board of Trustees.
Dr Anna Folwell, Consultant Community Geriatrician works on the elderly care ward at Hull Royal Infirmary, where she treats patients over the age of 82.
In her role with Hull University Teaching Trust, Dr Folwell also works at the Jean Bishop Integrated Care Centre – an innovative new facility close to our Newbridge Village development – which is transforming care for older people.
The aim of the community care which Dr Folwell provides is to reduce unnecessary hospital admissions and help people live independently in their own homes for longer.
Dr Folwell said older people cannot lead a healthy life without good housing and is impressed with what we offer. She is looking forward to helping us achieve our objectives. She said: “I am very excited to become a Trustee at PFH.
“One of PFH’s goals is to promote independent living and improve the health and wellbeing of older people, which I share in my clinical work.
“I am enthused that PFH recognises the impact of housing on people’s health and wellbeing, and that the organisation wants to continue to work to improve the lives of their residents.”
Dr Folwell, who is originally from Northern Ireland, moved to Hull ten years ago after becoming a doctor in August 2006.
She has spent the majority of her career specifically working with older people which gives her an expert understanding of our service users. Her role means more to her than just a job and, through preventative steps, helping people live independently for as long as possible is her passion.
She added: “Hospitals are not actually the safest place for older people. People really should only be admitted if they require care that can only be administered in hospitals.
“This is because hospital admissions and transfers to residential care can increase feelings of isolation, fear, anger and grief, impacting on their physical health.
“So if I can support PFH in making a difference by preventing things like people moving to residential care because their homes are truly ‘homes for life’ it could have an enormous impact for residents and their families, and one I am keen to try and make.
“Age is just a number – and should not be a barrier to living independently – if the right care is in place.” Dr Folwell, who is also a volunteer for the Jacobs Well charity in her spare time, is an expert in comprehensive geriatric assessment (CGA) – an evidence based approach to delaying transfer to residential care and improving quantity and quality of life for older people.
She said: “In my daily clinical work with teams and in the community I practice CGA and I am keen to expand this to more people living in their own homes, to try and reverse or slow progression of frailty.
“This means truly person-centred care, addressing issues such as loneliness and isolation, particularly in those with cognitive impairment.
“I am excited about the potential benefits to individuals and the health and social care system by improved partnership working.”
Claire Warren, Chief Executive of PFH, said: “Anna’s appointment to the Board of Trustees is a real coup for the organisation – we will benefit massively from her expertise. Anna’s work matches perfectly with our values and objectives as an organisation that focuses on people’s quality of life not just their housing.
“Her insight and passion are second to none and she is a fantastic addition to our Board, contributing to an already strong wealth of experience which drives PFH to succeed.”