Objectives: To compare the effectiveness of a digital video disc (DVD) with that of a written workbook delivering falls prevention education to older hospital patients on self-perceived risk of falls, perception of falls epidemiology, knowledge of prevention strategies, and motivation and confidence to engage in self-protective strategies. To compare the effect of receiving either education approach versus no education on patients' perception of falls epidemiology.

Design: Randomized trial (DVD vs workbook) with additional quasi-experimental control group.

Settings: Geriatric, medical, and orthopedic wards in Perth and Brisbane, Australia.

Participants: One hundred (n=51 DVD, n=49 workbook) hospital inpatients aged 60 and older receiving an intervention (mean age 75.3±10.1) and 122 in the control group (mean age 79.3±8.3).

Intervention: Participants randomly assigned to receive identical educational material on falls prevention delivered on a DVD or in a workbook. Control group received usual care.

Measurements: Custom-designed survey addressing elements of the Health Belief Model of health behavior change.

Results: Participants randomized to DVD delivery had a higher self-perceived risk of falling (P=.04) and higher levels of confidence (P=.03) and motivation (P=.04) to engage in self-protective strategies than participants who received the workbook. A higher proportion of participants who received either form of the education provided “desired” responses than of control group participants across all knowledge items (P<.001).

Conclusion: Delivery of falls prevention education on a DVD compared to a written workbook is more likely to achieve important changes in parameters likely to affect successful uptake of falls prevention messages in the hospital setting.


peer-reviewed, accidental falls, hospital, inpatients, prevention, education

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