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Having fun with a serious message

Having fun with a serious message

Associate Health Minister Jo Goodhew is commending two Christchurch health care workers who took on alter-egos to help spread the word on fall prevention.

Dubbed the ‘roving grannies’, nurses Lisa Bee and Helen Mathieson have visited hospitals and aged residential care homes as Betty Tripp and Mavis Brown, two sassy grandmas armed with information about falls prevention.

“Patient falls that result in serious harm are the most frequently reported adverse event in hospitals,” says Mrs Goodhew.

“Patients and their families are sometimes overwhelmed with advice and information, so it’s great to find new ways to get these important messages across.”

An orthopaedic trauma nurse, Lisa says her character ‘Betty Tripp’ – who wears a hospital nightie, non-slip socks and hair curlers, and uses a walking frame – is a great conversation-starter with staff, patients and families.

“I think people find it easier to ask me questions about how they can prevent a fall when I’m dressed up as Betty,” says Mrs Bee.

“It’s a fun, entertaining way to talk about issues such as avoiding hazardous clutter, keeping hospital trays within reach, and to maintain their fitness.”

Lisa and Helen began their work as the ‘roving grannies’ during Canterbury DHB’s April Falls promotion, which is linked to the Health Quality & Safety Commission’s Reducing Harm from Falls programme


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