Cause of Fractures and Deaths in Nursing
Falls are a major problem in healthcare facilities that can lead to fatal injuries, disabilities, and even deaths. Elderly patients and those with poor vision are more prone to such falls that might lead to prolonged stay at nursing homes and other healthcare facilities. Staying at nursing homes and other healthcare facilities is a costly affair. Figures pertaining to serious injuries and fatalities due to falls in nursing homes are quite alarming. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost 1,800 elderly patients die annually in nursing homes due to falls. The number of elderly patients (65 years of age and above) living in nursing homes is increasing every year, and it is estimated that by the year 2030, the figure will reach almost 3 million. Almost 20% of patients suffering injuries from falls die every year (CDC, 2012).
Muscle weakness is the foremost reason for falls in nursing homes. Such weakness makes it difficult for patients to move from one place to the other without assistance. Environmental hazards such as soggy floors, dim illumination, , and faulty wheelchairs also account for several falls. Another hazard is a medication that includes tranquilizers.
It is the occupational and moral duty of the nursing staff to prevent such falls and the subsequent damage. Several interventions are already being used to prevent such falls in nursing homes. This project proposes some interventions that will help in reducing incidents of falls in nursing homes.
There are certain interventions that require just a little care from the nursing and other staff members of the nursing homes. Foremost among such interventions is frequent monitoring of elderly patients. If such a patient is experiencing any dizziness, the medication should be changed. for patients can be helpful in keeping the body sturdy and in good shape. Keeping the floor dry and clean can avoid any slip-falls. Patient rooms should be free from any wires or things that might result in trip-fall. The beds of elderly patients should be adjusted to lower heights so that they do not have any difficulty in getting down.
Protective matting should be put around patients beds so that injuries due to accidental falls from beds can be minimized. Walking aids such as walking sticks should be provided to elderly patients. The rooms, bathrooms, corridors, and other areas where elderly patients might move around should be properly lit (without glare). All these areas should have railings for elderly patients to take support while walking. The areas where elderly patients move around should be equipped with strong chairs. Elderly patients should be provided with . A the bed can be of great advantage to patients who have problems walking. (with an assistant) should be provided for elderly patients. Finally, areas that require moving from a lower level to a higher one (and vice versa) should have a ramp for ease of elderly patients.
The target population for the project would be elderly patients living in nursing homes in the United States. There ought to be some hindrances to the implementation of this project because it is human tendency to reject any change. Nursing and other staff members might consider this project as an extra burden but appropriate training can remove such misconceptions. Considering the various reasons for falls, the interventions suggested for the project would reduce such falls significantly. Elderly patients would be able to lead an easy life while recovering from their illness.