Fall is just around the corner, but falls for Logan County’s senior adult population shouldn’t be. That’s why Mary Rutan Hospital and the Logan County Health District are partnering to provide community education and fall prevention programs.
While falls are the leading cause of both fatal and nonfatal injury for people 65 years of age and older, they are not an inevitable part of aging. Mary Rutan Hospital’s Physical Therapy and Health and Wellness Team, along with the Logan County Health District, seek to raise awareness about how to prevent fall-related injury among Logan County’s older adults.
“Seniors who have fallen once are nearly three times more likely to fall again. Nearly 55% of those falls occur inside the home. We can change this by bringing greater attention to the many preventive measures that can be easily adopted to keep our seniors safe and more active”, says Dr. Boyd Hoddinott, Logan County Health Commissioner.”
Studies show that a combination of behavioral changes can significantly reduce falls among older adults. Through the Solid Ground Fall Risk Screening and Prevention Program, Community Health Nurse Nancy Harmon, is facilitating Matter of Balance classes in the Bellefontaine and Indian Lake area. This 4-week course, free to community members, allows participant to learn to:
· View falls and fear of falling as controllable
· Set realistic goals for increasing activity
· Make changes to reduce fall risks at home
· Learn exercises to increase strength and balance
Participants that are identified to be at further risk of a fall after the completion of the program will be encouraged to follow-up with their primary physician and/or take advantage of the Solid Ground Fall Prevention Program available through Mary Rutan Hospital Physical Rehabilitation Center.
While the initial programs are targeted towards Logan County assisted/independent living sites, senior centers and various community churches, there is a much broader vision for the community. Over the coming months and year the team will be working with home health agencies, community groups and Mary Rutan Hospital emergency and surgical department to identify and help alleviate fall risks.
For more information about the Solid Ground Program and to register for one of the upcoming Matter of Balance sessions to help older adults gain strength, improve balance, and build confidence to help them live healthier lives and preserve their independence, contact the MRH Community Relations Department at 599-7005.
Submitted by Mary Rutan Hospital.