This year Fall Prevention Awareness Day will occur on September 22, 2018. The purpose of this important day is to raise awareness about preventing falls among older adults. The National Council on Aging (NCOA) encourages government and private parties to use the opportunity of Fall Prevention Awareness Day to raise awareness about the danger of falls and to share fall prevention strategies.
The Risk of Falls in Nursing Homes
While anyone can get hurt in a fall, older people are at increased risk of suffering serious side effects after fall accidents. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- One out of every five falls can cause a serious injury
- Each year, approximately three million older people go to emergency rooms because of fall accidents
- More than 800,000 older people are hospitalized each year because of fall accident injuries
- Common reasons for hospitalizations after fall accidents include hip fractures and head injuries
- About 95 percent of hip fractures are caused by falling
- Falls are the most common cause of head injuries
- Falls can lead to fear of falling again and prevent older people from going about their normal activities
The physical and psychological impacts of a fall can be devastating.
While some falls are simply accidents that could not have been avoided even with due care, some falls are the result of nursing home negligence. For example, a nursing home resident may fall if staff members fail to use appropriate interventions to prevent falls, fail to help residents get to the bathroom, fail to check on residents regularly to see if they need assistance, or fail to make sure that floors are kept clutter-free and dry.
Help Raise Awareness to Prevent Future Falls in Iowa Nursing Homes
On Fall Prevention Awareness Day, and throughout the year, we encourage you to take steps to help others be aware of fall risks in nursing homes and outside of nursing homes. You can do that by joining in one of the official Fall Prevention Awareness Day activities, by sharing this article on social media, or by talking to your friends and loved ones or their caregivers.