Falls Prevention Awareness Day was first observed in 2008 and has grown in participation in the event from 11 states to 47 states and the District of Columbia. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
- One-third of Americans 65 and older fall each year.
- Every 14 seconds, an older adult is treated in the emergency room for a fall; every 29 minutes, an older adult dies following a fall.
- Falls are the leading cause of fatal injury and the most common cause of nonfatal trauma-related hospital admissions among older adults.
- Falls result in more than 2.4 million injuries treated in emergency departments annually, including over 772,000 hospitalizations and more than 21,700 deaths.
- In 2012, the total cost of fall injuries was over $36 billion.
- The financial toll for older adult falls is expected to increase as the population ages and may reach $59.6 billion by 2020.
Falls with or without injury also carry a heavy quality of life impact. A growing number of older adults fear falling and, as a result, self-limit activities and social engagements. This can result in further physical decline, depression, social isolation, and feelings of helplessness.
As therapists, how can WE help?
Need a starting point? Use the information in the course below to brush up on fall prevention for yourself, or use the information to educate others. Our therapists met with senior center staff in our community and provided the information as part of a Fall Prevention Awareness program. Staff had excellent questions and were appreciative of a therapists’ perspective.
Click HERE to access your free Fall Prevention: Keeping Seniors Safe 2 contact hour home study course…this week only! Use Coupon Code FPAD15 – expires 9/26/15. Members need to log in to access the information. If you are not a Member yet, visit our Subscribe tab for details. Basic Membership is free.
There are many fall prevention resources out there. See what fits your style and go with it! Visit www.ncoa.org or www.APTA.org for more information.
In YOUR Corner,
Dolores Montero, PT, DPT, GCS, RAC-CT, RAC-CTA
Montero Therapy & MDS Compliance Team
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