Abstract NS9: A Successful Fall Prevention Program In A Mixed Nursing Unit Does Not Translate To Decreased Fall Rates For Stroke Patients
Background: Patients with stroke are at high risk for falls, and it is a known medical complication after stroke. It is recorded that approximately 5% of ischemic stroke patients fall at least once in the acute hospitalization. In August 2011, a fall prevention program was implemented in a mixed nursing unit that was successful in reducing falls for hospitalized patients.
Purpose: The aim of this retrospective sub-group analysis is to examine the fall rate and percentage of falls for stroke and TIA patients after the implementation of a successful fall prevention program in a nursing unit within a community hospital.
Methods: The fall prevention program, entitled “No One Walks Alone (NIWA)” was implemented August 2011 in an area where the majority of stroke patients were hospitalized. NIWA included the use of routine bed alarms, identifying all patients as a fall risk, routine rounding, and a team approach, which involved the unit desk clerk, primary nurse, patient, and/or family. Stroke records for 3/2011-12/2011 was retrospectively retrieved and the percentage and rate of post-stroke falls compared.
Results: A total of 300 hospitalized patients with stroke (mean age 73.1, 54.7% male, 73.4% ischemic, 17% TIA, 9.6% hemorrhagic) were reviewed during the study period, and there was a total of 6 falls. Prior to NIWA, there were 165 stroke patients, with an incidence of 3 falls (1.8%) compared to 135 stroke patients with 3 falls (2.2%, p>0.05). The fall rate for stroke patients prior to NIWA was 6.2 falls per 1000 patient days compared to 9.6 falls per 1000 patient days (p>0.05).
Conclusion: Although there was no significant difference between the fall percentage and rate for stroke patients with the implementation of a successful fall prevention program, our analysis supports the importance of fall prevention during the acute hospitalization. When compared to the 5% of stroke patients who fall during the acute hospitalization, our hospital continued to demonstrate a lower percentage of falls in this sub-group of patients. Further study is warranted in obtaining a larger cohort, with further analysis to identify risk factors and unique characteristics specific to our patient population to identify those at risk and prevent further post-stroke falls.
Author Disclosures: J. Rosete: None. W. Neil: None. J. Button: None. D. Buccigrossi: None. K. Forde: None. K. Mallett: None.
- © 2015 by American Heart Association, Inc.