The CDC and Fall Prevention

Angie Szumlinski Uncategorized

As providers we tend to use the CDC website for information on infection control practices but were you aware that the CDC is actively working with the Administration on Aging (AoA), the National Council on Aging (NCOA), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and several other agencies to address falls in the elderly?  This collaboration is focused on identifying what population is at highest risk for falls and ways to assist in preventing future falls and/or minimize the risk for injuries related to falls. 

Knowing that we are always looking for new ideas to improve the quality of care we provide HealthCap thought these additional resources may assist in further enhancing your fall prevention protocols.  Go to www.CDC.gov and search “Falls in the Elderly” to access some very interesting documents. 

A sample of what the CDC has identified include the following statistics:

Who is at risk?

Fatal falls

  • In 2007, 81% of fall deaths were among people 65 and older.3
  • Men are more likely to die from a fall. After adjusting for age, the fall fatality rate in 2007 was 46% higher for men than for women.3
  • Older whites are 2.5 times more likely to die from falls as their black counterparts.3
  • Older non–Hispanics have higher fatal fall rates than Hispanics.12

Nonfatal falls

  • The chances of falling and of being seriously injured in a fall increase with age. In 2008, the rate of fall injuries for adults 85 and older was almost four times that for adults 65 to 74.3
  • People age 75 and older who fall are four to five times more likely than those age 65 to 74 to be admitted to a long-term care facility for a year or longer.13
  • Women are more likely than men to be injured in a fall. In 2008, women were 46% more likely than men to suffer a nonfatal fall injury.3
  • Rates of fall-related fractures among older women are more than twice those for men.14
  • Falls may lead to hip fractures. In 2006, the hip fracture rate for older women was almost twice the rate for men.15
  • White women have significantly higher hip fracture rates than black women.16