Patient Falls Prevention

1050 Words5 Pages

Present the Evidence: Prevention of Patient Falls According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), each year, one third of those who are 65 and older fall (2013). These falls contributed to $34 billion in direct medical costs in 2013 (cite). With these statistics, it is apparent that health care professionals and health care settings need to make fall prevention a priority in their facilities. The aim of this paper is to explore a fall prevention policy and practice guidelines to evaluate recent evidence and offer recommendations. The policy and procedure to be examined presents guidelines for both preventing and documenting falls in an acute care setting. This policy is to be used daily and with every patient in a hospital setting. …show more content…

The policy from UTMB notes all of these factors as procedures in their handbook. While the UTMB policy cites, “A fall risk assessment shall be completed by a Registered Nurse (RN) as part of the Nursing Admission Assessment on all inpatients within 24 hours of admission including patients in observation status.” (2012, p. 1). This policy also places the responsibility of fall prevention on all staff. It is noted in this policy that any healthcare professional should recognize the designated interventions identifying a patient as a fall risk and they are responsible to stay with the patient until another arrives to …show more content…

Fall rates should be assessed prior to implementation, post 1 month and post 6 months of implementation. In addition, a survey provided to nursing staff can assist in the evaluation of increased resources and collaboration with physical therapy increasing their ability to assist with ambulation and exercise. This survey may include questions relating if nurses feel they have increased time to assist patients in education and exercises to decrease fall risk.
Through evaluation of currently UTMB policy and recent policy guidelines, no new additions to the policy were identified. Rather, recommendations to increase compliance and ease staff load were identified. These recommendations include increased collaboration with physical therapy to increase equipment availability, early identification of therapy needs with a patient and increased compliance with daily exercise programs. As the cost of falls has been identified as billions of dollars, an economical decision should be made in order to increase supply of walkers available on the units. The aim of these recommendations is to increase compliance with activities to increase patient strength and balance as this has been shown, as a part of a multi-intervention policy, to decrease falls in acute care

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