Fall is the leading cause of injury deaths and hospital trauma admissions in older adults. Fall is also preventable if we know the risk factors and take action to minimize them.
The first week of Fall each year is Fall Prevention Awareness Week. This event has taken place since 2008 to raise awareness among older adults, their families and caregivers, eldercare professionals, and the general public about the seriousness of this preventable problem.
During the week, healthcare providers, health professionals, and senior service agencies will hold workshops, health fairs, presentations, screenings etc., to inform and educate the community. It would be great if we could get as many people as possible involved in the various activities.
For those who want to participate, StopFalls.org has many ideas and resources to help you or your organization plan for Fall Prevention Awareness Week. For example:
- Distribute flyers/handouts on home safety, outdoor falls, medication awareness, balance and vision.
- Set up display/bulletin boards at your workplace.
- Offer vision exams, blood pressure checks, foot exams, gait and balance assessments, bone density screenings, and medication reviews.
- Provide posters, fact sheets, and handouts to senior centres, hospitals, doctor offices, and other groups to post in lobbies, waiting rooms, and communal areas.
- Organize fall prevention workshops or discussion groups.
- Physical therapist to demonstrate the proper use of assistive devices.
- Posting on social media such as Facebook and Twitter.
There are many ways to get involved. Some activities will need a lot of planning and personnel; you can help by volunteering in these groups. You would have done an excellent job by announcing the event on social media to get your friends to join.
The National Council On Aging (NCOA) has a comprehensive range of information and resources about the risks of falls and how to prevent them. Many of these resources are available in Spanish, Portuguese and Chinese. You can access fact sheets, infographics, and handouts from the website.