Cochrane Journal Club: fifth issue

Interventions for preventing falls in older people in nursing care facilities and hospitals

What effective measures can nursing care facilities and hospitals take to prevent falls?

The risk of falling increases in unfamiliar surroundings.  Couple this with newly acquired risk factors, such as hip fracture or stroke, and it’s not surprising that considerable mortality and morbidity are associated with falls in nursing care facilities and hospitals.  The majority of falls are caused by complex combinations of factors operating at the time of each fall, and randomised controlled trials have accordingly investigated several interventions, including exercise, medication optimisation, vitamin D supplementation, education and environmental modifications.

The authors of a recently published Cochrane Review analysed 41 studies from 13 countries with 25,442 participants in total.  The mean age of all participants was 83 years, and 73% were female.

Is there a single intervention that hospitals and nursing care facilities can initiate to effectively prevent falls in older people?  Find out in the latest issue of Cochrane Journal Club.

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Contributor's Information
Contributor's name: 
Harriet MacLehose
Email address: 
HMacLehose@cochrane.org
Updated on: June 16, 2010, 4:45