How Skilled Nursing Facilities Prevent Falls and Injuries of Seniors
Skilled nursing facilities are an essential part of the healthcare system. They provide round-the-clock medical care and support to older adults and people with disabilities. However, these facilities are also prone to accidents and injuries, especially falls. Falls are the leading cause of injuries among older adults and can result in serious consequences such as fractures, head injuries, and even death. As a result, it is essential to develop strategies that can prevent falls and injuries in skilled nursing facilities. In this blog, we will discuss some of the strategies that skilled nursing facilities can use to prevent falls and injuries.
- Conduct Risk Assessments
One of the most effective strategies to prevent falls and injuries in skilled nursing facilities is to conduct a risk assessment. A risk assessment is a process of identifying potential hazards and evaluating the likelihood and severity of an incident. Skilled nursing facilities can use risk assessments to identify the areas where falls and injuries are most likely to occur, such as hallways, bathrooms, and common areas. By identifying these areas, facilities can take appropriate measures to reduce the risk of falls and injuries.
- Implement Fall Prevention Programs
Another effective strategy to prevent falls and injuries is to implement fall prevention programs. These programs typically involve a combination of interventions such as exercise, medication management, and environmental modifications. For instance, facilities can install grab bars in bathrooms, improve lighting, and remove tripping hazards such as rugs and cords. Additionally, staff can encourage residents to participate in regular exercise programs to improve strength and balance.
- Educate Staff and Residents
Education is an essential component of any fall prevention program. Staff and residents should be educated on the risks associated with falls and how to prevent them. Staff should receive training on fall prevention strategies, such as how to assist residents with mobility, how to identify fall hazards, and how to respond to a fall. Residents should also receive education on how to prevent falls, such as how to use mobility aids safely and how to ask for assistance when needed.
- Use Technology
Technology can also be used to prevent falls and injuries in skilled nursing facilities. For instance, facilities can install bed and chair alarms that alert staff when a resident is attempting to get up. Motion sensors can also be installed in hallways and common areas to alert staff when a resident is wandering. Additionally, wearable devices such as fall detection sensors and GPS trackers can be used to monitor residents’ movements and alert staff in case of a fall.
- Improve Communication
Improving communication among staff and residents can also help prevent falls and injuries. Staff should communicate regularly with residents to identify potential hazards and address their concerns. Additionally, staff should communicate with each other to ensure that all hazards are identified and addressed promptly. Facilities should also encourage residents to speak up if they notice a hazard or if they need assistance.
- Conduct Regular Reviews
Finally, regular reviews of fall prevention programs are essential to ensure that they are effective. Facilities should conduct regular reviews of their risk assessments, fall prevention programs, and education programs to identify areas for improvement. Additionally, facilities should monitor the number and severity of falls to determine if their programs are effective.
Falls and injuries are a significant risk in skilled nursing facilities. However, there are strategies that facilities can use to prevent falls and injuries. Conducting risk assessments, implementing fall prevention programs, educating staff and residents, using technology, improving communication, and conducting regular reviews are all effective strategies that can help prevent falls and injuries. By implementing these strategies, skilled nursing facilities can improve the safety and well-being of their residents.
Beaumont Health Care Center is a skilled nursing facility located in Beaumont, Texas. The facility is dedicated to providing high-quality care to its residents and has implemented several strategies to prevent falls and injuries. These strategies include conducting risk assessments, implementing fall prevention programs, educating staff and residents, and using technology. The facility also encourages communication among staff and residents and conducts regular reviews to ensure the effectiveness of its fall prevention programs. By implementing these strategies, Beaumont Health Care Center is committed to ensuring the safety and well-being of its residents. Contact us to schedule a tour today!