Falls are a big concern for all employees in a hospital setting daily. The worst thing that can happen to a patient while being hospitalized is a fall, or a major fall, that could result in skin damage (i.e. wounds, skin tears, or abrasions), a fracture or break, thus limiting their independence. This student’s goal was to develop a way to educate staff members in ways they can help reduce the number of falls that occur. Developing a sample Fall Risk Prevention Policy as well as a Staff in-service on fall risk and Prevention achieved this goal.
Field of Work: Prevention of patient falls at NCH- Orthopedic Unit
Problem: Patient falls have long been a common and serious problem in hospitals across the nation, causing substantial injury up to and including death. Because of this, there is an increased risk of serious injury, which increases with age. Making older patients more vulnerable. NCH analyzed 57 patient falls on this unit over a 13-month period.
Goals of Project: (1) Return the patient to optimal level of function in the home environment (private residence, ILF, or ALF) and in the community, (2) reduce the occurrence of hospitalization secondary to falls, and (3) adapt the patient’s environment for enhanced and optimal safety.
This student developed a sample Fall Risk Prevention Policy that the staff and unit Director could evaluate and then determine if it is one that would be beneficial to the unit. The Policy covers several concepts, listed as follows: fall definition, equipment needed, implementation, environmental considerations, patient and family education, patient education components, documentation, fall occurrence and post fall nursing and direct care staff. This would co-inside with the use of t...
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Florida Injury Facts. (2010). Florida Department of Health. Retrieved June 27, 2010, from www.doh.state.fl.us/DEMO/InjuryPrevention/Data/2008Data/UnintentionalSeniorFallsFactSheet2008v2.pdf
Larson, L. & Bergmann, T. (2008). Taking on the fall: The Etiology and Prevention of Falls in the Elderly. Clinical Chiropractic, 11, 148-154.
Vassallo, M., Mallela, S., Williams, A., Kwan, J., Allen, S. & Sharma, J. (2009). Fall Risk Factors in Elderly Patients with Cognitive Impairment on Rehabilitation Wards. Japan Geriatrics Society, 9, 41-46.
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