Ask ECRI: Using Bed-Exit Alarms to Limit Fall Risk

May 28, 2018 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance

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​A risk manager recently wrote to ECRI Institute seeking information on the evidence regarding the use of sensor mats to reduce the risk of patient or resident falls.

In our response, ECRI Institute notes that although bed-exit alarms can in some circumstances contribute to preventing falls, they do not themselves prevent falls. Bed-exit alarms are intended to alert staff that patients who should not leave their beds unassisted are in fact doing so. This allows caregivers to intervene—potentially preventing a fall—or to provide prompt assistance if the patient has already fallen. Bed-exit alarms can also serve other purposes,...

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