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Preventing Falls for Older Adults

Falls reduce quality of life for our seniors, impacting their mobility, health and independence.

Falls also cost the Ontario health-care system billions of dollars, resulting in avoidable visits to the emergency department (ED), hospitalizations, high Alternate Level of Care rates, and all too often, admission to long-term care homes.

 

In the fiscal year 2009:   

  • 50% of injury-related hospitalizations were due to falls

  • more than 90 per cent of all hip fractures are due to falls

  • 55 per 1,000 seniors visited the ED due to a fall

  • 13 per 1,000 seniors were hospitalized due to a fall

Falls are a leading cause of injury and death among seniors. And yet, most falls are avoidable with proper education, awareness, screening, assessment, intervention and prevention.

 

To address this, Ontario’s Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs) and Public Health Units partnered to develop an Integrated Provincial Falls Prevention Framework & Toolkit to improve quality of life for Ontario seniors aged 65 years and over, and to lessen the impact of falls on the health care system by reducing the number and impact of falls. Please click on the links below to find out more:

This project aligns with government and LHIN priorities to reduce Alternate Level of Care and Emergency Department wait times, as well as the province’s Excellent Care for All Act and public health’s Injury Prevention and Healthy Communities strategies.

 

Many organizations are already doing great work to reduce falls among seniors. This framework and toolkit pulls together leading practices, programs and resources to create a coordinated, consistent approach to measure the effectiveness of falls prevention interventions across the province.

 

The Central East LHIN, in partnership with their Public Health Units, will be implementing a LHIN-wide Integrated Falls Prevention Program, with flexibility to ensure local needs are addressed appropriately.

We have shared the Integrated Provincial Falls Prevention Framework & Toolkit with our stakeholders and will be working with them to implement the key actions outlined in this report.

 

To learn more about preventing falls, call the Health Unit toll-free at 1-866-888-4577.