Image: Montefiore has implemented a comprehensive nursing effort to decrease falls throughout the hospital. full image
As the country’s senior citizen population skyrockets—roughly 18 million Americans age 75 and over, with 77 million baby boomers forthcoming—reducing falls in hospitals and other healthcare settings is a key priority.
Statistics show that over 40% of people who suffer hip fractures do not return home and cannot live independently, and 25% of older adults who have fallen die each year. People who have fallen often have difficulty recovering and their overall health declines.
With the goal of improving patient safety through fall reduction, Montefiore Medical Center has implemented a comprehensive nursing effort to decrease falls in acute care settings and inpatient units throughout the hospital. The initiative includes the following:
- Ongoing assessments to identify patients at risk of falling and establish appropriate intervention
- Hourly rounding and assessment of environmental conditions contributing to fall risk
- Peer review of all injury-associated falls
- Evaluations of patients’ medication profiles for fall risk
Since implemented in 2004, the Montefiore nursing falls prevention initiative has resulted in a steady overall decrease in fall rate per 1000 patient days.