Falls Prevention

Fall prevention: Applying the evidence

This is the first in a series of three case studies illustrating success stories in preventing falls and injuries from falls. The series is brought to you by Posey. Watch for the next case study in the September issue of American Nurse Today. Successful fall prevention programs use multimodal interventions, such as detailed fall risk assessments, frequent monitoring by staff, and appropriate … Read more

We’ve made gains in preventing falls, but more work remains

This year marks the 20-year milestone of the American Nurses Association’s (ANA) leadership in making patient falls a nurse-sensitive indicator. In 1995, ANA’s work on nurse-sensitive indicator development resulted in the Nursing Care Report Card for Acute Care. This report included falls as a nurse indicator, demonstrating that nurses play an important role in outcomes … Read more

Assessing your patients’ risk for falling

An estimated 25,500 Americans died from falls in healthcare and community settings in 2013. Countless more suffered life-changing injuries, such as fractures, internal injuries, and traumatic brain injury. Experts estimate that more than 84% of adverse events in hospital patients are related to falls, which can prolong or complicate recovery. This article identifies risk factors … Read more

Taking appropriate precautions against falls

Falls pose a major public health problem around the world. In the United States, unintentional falls occur in all age groups. Such falls are the leading cause of nonfatal injuries treated in emergency departments (EDs) among all age groups except ages 10-14 and 15-24, for whom these falls are the second leading cause. Commonly called … Read more

Creating an environment of falls prevention

Falls are a major concern for older adults in all settings, causing significant morbidity and mortality and affecting quality of life. In the hospital, falls occur at an estimated rate of 8.9 per 1,000 patient days. About 30% to 50% of these falls cause injury. Falls increase hospital stays and may necessitate a long-term stay. According … Read more

Preventing injuries from patient falls

While falls prevention has become standard in inpatient care, injury prevention has gotten less attention, both in research and everyday practice. Injuries from falls can have serious consequences in patients, ranging from minor cuts and bruises to fractures, head injury, and even death. An estimated 11,000 patients die from falls in U.S. hospitals every year. … Read more

Fall prevention: A contract with patients and families

Editor’s note: This is the second of three case studies describing success stories in preventing falls and injuries from falls. The series is brought to you by TIDI. Watch for the next case study in the November issue of American Nurse Today. When hospital patients fall and suffer an injury, family members perceive that nurses and other hospital staff aren’t paying … Read more

Fall prevention: The little things can make a big difference

In 2014, a multidisciplinary task force at Central Maine Medical Center (CMMC) in Lewiston created a fall-reduction program flexible enough to be customized to each unit’s medical specialty. The team chose the fall-prevention toolkit from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality as the best-practice guide against which to evaluate CMMC’s program. A comprehensive collection of best … Read more

Hook-and-loop alarm belt: A vital component in a fall-prevention toolkit

Editor’s note: This is one in a series of recurring case studies describing success stories in preventing falls and injuries from falls. The series is brought to you by Posey. Watch for the next case study in the March issue of American Nurse Today. In 2012, Yale New Haven Hospital’s fall-prevention charter noted a hospital-wide increase … Read more

Self-releasing alarm belts: It takes two

Patient falls from chairs are increasing at an alarming rate: What can a hospital’s nursing staff do to stop this trend? That was the challenge faced by unit leaders of the Center for Rehabilitation at Wilmington Hospital. Notification that falls were increasing came as a surprise to us. Just 2 years earlier, we had lowered our … Read more