Course Overview

Brief

This Course will look at what a fall is, why identifying falls risk is important, and what we as healthcare professionals need to aware of, to appropriately identify fall risk.

Learning Outcomes

  • Be confident in your knowledge about falls to better care for people at risk and those who have experienced a fall
  • Immediately identify intrinsic and extrinsic risk factors for falling in a variety of settings to better implement preventative strategies
  • Use validated and supported risk screening and assessment tools to determine an individual's degree of risk or harm from falls

Topics include:

  • The importance of identifying falls risk
  • Personal and environmental risk factors
  • Screening and assessment

Target audience

All healthcare professionals working in both inpatient and community health settings.

Purpose

Enable healthcare professionals to be able to appropriately identify patients/residents who are at risk of falling through an understanding of what a fall is, why falling is an issue of concern, and what the environmental and personal risk factors for falling are.

Need

Falls are the second leading cause of accidental or unintentional injury deaths worldwide; each year an estimated 424,000 individuals die from falls globally, and 37.3 million falls are severe enough to require medical attention. Adults older than 65 suffer the greatest number of fatal falls. In inpatient settings, fall injuries within hospitals have steadily increased. The impact of falls on individuals is far reaching - the social impact of reduced independence through fear, the potential for loss of independence, and the increased burden on families, can be significant. The risk of falls and harm from falls is higher for people with impaired vision, poor balance, muscle weakness, reduced bone density and taking some medications. The more risk factors an individual has, the greater the risk of falls and harm from falls. Older people, in particular, are at increased risk of falls when they enter health care facilities. Prevention strategies should emphasise education, training, creating safer environments, prioritising fall-related research, and establishing effective policies to reduce risk.

Health professionals in Australia that are registered with AHPRA are required to obtain continuing professional development (CPD) hours/points each year that relates to their context of practice, in order to comply with mandatory regulatory requirements.

Educators