Title

The effect of patient education for the prevention of in-hospital falls in older patients - a randomised controlled trial

Abstract

Accidental falls in older hospital patients are a serious problem. Trials to date aiming to prevent older people falling whilst inpatients have produced conflicting results.The aim of this trial was to investigate the effect of providing individual patient education in addition to usual care on the rate of falls and falls related injuries in older hospital patients compared to the effect of providing usual care alone. A randomised controlled trial (n=1206) was conducted at two hospitals in Australia. Inclusion criteria were that participants were over 60 years of age and they, or their family or guardian, gave written consent. Participants were randomised into three groups. The control group continued to receive usual care. Both intervention groups received a specifically designed patient education intervention on minimising falls in addition to usual care. The education was delivered by Digital Video Disc (DVD) and written workbook. One of the intervention groups also received follow up education training visits by a health professional. The primary outcome measure was falls by participants in hospital. Secondary outcome measures included falls at home after discharge, knowledge of falls prevention strategies and motivation to engage in falls prevention activities after discharge. The interim analyses conducted with data from (n=500) participants indicated a trend towards a lower rate of falls and proportion of participants who became fallers in one of the three groups (investigators were blinded to group allocation in interim analyses). Data collection for this component of the study is anticipated to be complete by May 2009.

Keywords

patient education, in-hospital falls, randomised controlled trial

Comments

Where possible the Link To Full Text button at the top of this page will link you to a full text version of this research output. Where, due to copyright or licence restrictions, it is not be possible to link to the full text version of this item the link will take you to the website of the copyright owner, who should be able to provide access to the output.

The University Library recommends the National Library of Australia TROVE search service to locate this research output within an Australian library.