Advisory: Risk Assessment Necessary for Successful Falls Prevention Programs

September 12, 2012 | Risk Management News

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Pairing risk assessment with functional assessment tests and injury risk assessments shows promise of further delineating patients at highest risk of falls and falls-with-injury events, concludes a September 2012 Pennsylvania Patient Safety Advisory article. According to the article, in 2011, the Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority received reports of more than 32,000 falls. Of these patients who fell, 64% were reported to have had a falls risk assessment completed, 60% had been identified as at risk for falling, and 65% were reported to have had prevention strategies in place. While these statistics may reflect a lack of documentation, rather than a deficiency in practice, evaluation of compliance with best practices with respect to falls prevention is warranted, beginning with performance of a falls risk assessment for all patients. Many falls risk assessment tools have been developed to screen for risk factors most predictive of falls.

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