The following is an article from the Utah Department of Health. Aspire works closely with this department as a proud member of the OTAGO Fall Prevention Program. With Fall Prevention Awareness Day just around the corner, we found it an appropriate article. Enjoy:
September 22 is Fall Prevention Awareness Day in Utah. One in four older adults fall each year and fewer than half talk to their primary care provider about a fall. As home health care providers you are all aware of the devastating impact on an individual’s independence and function.
Many falls can be prevented by screening and appropriate interventions to address risk factors. Every patient who has suffered a recent fall or reports a fear of falling should receive a multi-factorial risk assessment based on the CDC’s STEADI protocol. Include interventions for fall risk factors in your treatment plan. For example, add exercises to address strength and balance deficits; ensure proper lighting, add grab bars, and reduce clutter to make the home more safe; review medications and consult a pharmacist or primary care provider if necessary; enlist family members to assist with household chores and shopping.
Lastly, when you’ve completed Home Health visits with the patient, please connect them to community resources that help keep seniors active, engaged, and independent. The Utah Department of Health’s Living Well website has information on community fall prevention programs such as Stepping On workshops and Tai Chi classes. If your patient needs extra assistance in the home, connect them with their local Area Agency on Aging that provides Meals on Wheels and other support services. Additional fall prevention information and resources can be found on the Utah Falls Prevention Alliance website.