Tackling malnutrition in older people living at home in Scotland

The Paperweight Armband Tool


What is the Paperweight Armband Tool?

The Paperweight Armband is a non-medical, non-intrusive tool developed by Age UK Salford. The tool is helping health and social care professionals identify older people at risk of malnutrition and signpost them to accessible information and advice. This approach helps people and carers self-manage and address the risk of malnutrition before consulting with their GP or healthcare professionals.

How does it work?

The Paperweight Armband is intended to be used in a wide range of settings to raise awareness of the risks of malnutrition and direct people to practical nutrition advice quickly and safely. Our video demonstrates exactly how to use the armband, as well as the key questions to ask an older person you may be concerned about and what appropriate action to take if someone is identified as being at risk.

Is it effective?

Since the introduction of the paperweight armband Age UK Salford has reported a reduction in hospital admissions, a 50% increase in reporting of underweight BMI in primary care after 1 year and a more appropriate prescribing of oral nutritional supplements.

The Greater Manchester Nutrition and Hydration Programme Research Study designed to evaluate the effectiveness of the Paperweight Armband showed that 81% of participants had a positive response in terms of gaining weight or stopping weight loss at 12 weeks post intervention.

Everyone who takes part in our Raising the Issue of Malnutrition training is taught how to use the Paperweight Armband. Here's what some of our participants have said about it: