Definition Of A Long Term Condition Nursing Essay
The number of people living in the UK with a long term condition is increasing rapidly. As healthcare provision improves and the availability of healthcare increases, the number of people living longer increases. The proportion of the population aged over 80 years will increase to one in twelve over the next 25 years, and one in four will be over the age of 65 years. (Health Delivery Directorate Improvement and Support Team, 2009)
As people get older their health may begin to change and are more likely to suffer from illnesses and chronic conditions. At present, care for people with long term conditions, particularly older people, is reactive and interventions generally only take place after an event or exacerbation of a long term illness. A system change by NHS Scotland aims to deliver an integrated, coordinated and preventative health and social care system, especially for people with long term conditions (NHS Scotland, 2007).
A long term condition (also called chronic condition) can be defined as health problems that require ongoing care and management over a period of years or decades (WHO, 2012). Long term conditions can sometimes be referred to as chronic diseases. They are conditions that last for a year or longer and can greatly impact on a person's life which may result in the person requiring continued support and care. Long term conditions can affect children as well as adults and is not only the elderly who can be affected. It is also not just confined to physical illness but it can also include a range of mental health illnesses. Amongst the most common long term conditions are diabetes, epilepsy, heart disease, chronic pain, arthritis, some mental health problems, asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) (NHS, 2012).
In the past, care for people with long term conditions was generally reactive and unplanned (DHSSPS, 2011). People with long term conditions are twice as likely to be...