- 1,800 residents die every year because of accidental falls in U.S. nursing homes.
- Up to 1 million U.S. hospital patients have an accidental fall every year.
Improve fall management with AliMed's effective solutions
Whether elderly patients are ambulatory or staying in a long-term care facility, all these individuals have one thing in common: None of them can be monitored by a caregiver 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
People, who are prone to accidental falls, including those who have dementia or an altered sense of balance, can seriously injure themselves. Ultimately, accidental falls can complicate the recovery process for preexisting medical problems, inflate health care costs or, in some cases, lead to an untimely death. Not only can those who work in the care industry lose the trust of the patients and families with whom they work, institutions may potentially be liable for falls due to increased quality scoring methods and scrutiny by regulated agencies. The keys to fall prevention lie in awareness of the problem, and in using the best tools to help patients.
Who has problems with accidental falls?
In nursing homes, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that about 1,800 adult residents die every year because of accidental falls. Meanwhile, those who survive are likely to endure disabling injuries that can decrease the quality of life. Overall, between one-half and three-quarters of nursing home residents fall each year. This underscores the importance of fall prevention in nursing homes.
The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality estimated that one in every 10 residents who falls has a serious related injury, and about 65,000 patients annually suffer a hip fracture. Some falls may never even be reported.
Additionally, studies show that, in hospitals, between 70,000 and 1 million patients in the U.S. have an accidental fall every year. Between 20 and 48 percent of falls result in serious injury, costing hospitals up to $19,400 per incident.
Common causes of falls, particularly in nursing homes, include muscle weakness, poorly-fitting footwear and improperly-fitted wheelchairs.
What solutions can help with fall management programs?
Fortunately, AliMed offers fall prevention solutions that can help caregivers and other health care providers with fall management. These include a variety of voice, cordless and other fall monitoring systems with versatile placement (i.e. wheelchair, hallway, bedside, etc.) and sensor options (pads, belts, etc). In addition to alarms, AliMed offers hip protectors and other solutions that can prevent fractures in patients who may fall.
Other fall management products include safety mats, anti-tipping devices for wheelchairs, and skid-resistant footwear. Such solutions allow patients to maintain a degree of independence, while simultaneously allowing caregivers to stay vigilant over the health and safety of the individuals they are caring for.
- US. Dept. of Health & Human Services, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, December 2012
- Patient Safety and Quality: An evidence-based Handbook for Nurses, 2008
- Amerinet, 2011