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Their own two feet: engaging patients in fall prevention

A trial of individualised education that engages older patients in falls prevention has shown falls and resulting injuries reduced by 40 per cent.

The study involved more than 3500 people across eight Western Australian aged-care rehabilitation units. It encouraged patients to develop strategies to improve their safety whilst in hospital. This was informed by educational tools, including a short video clip and workbook.

Study lead Dr Anne-Marie Hill, from the University of Notre Dame Australia’s Institute for Health Research, said: “Patients have been positive about receiving clear education on how they can assist their own recovery.

“Our team hopes this education package can be rolled out widely across rehabilitation units that admit older patients, as an effective tool to reduce falls in these high-risk settings.”

Health editor Dallas Bastian spoke with Hill about the trial and the impact encouraging patients to develop their own strategies has on their safety and adherence to prevention plans.

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