September 22nd: National Fall Prevention Awareness Day

As we transition into September, we welcome the beginning seasonal changes of the fall season, changing colors of leaves,  cooler weather, and even falling leaves.  This year, September 22nd, is the First Day of Fall, but did you know that this day is also National Falls Prevention Awareness Day. This dedicated day resulted from national evidence about the prevalence and burden of falls among aging and vulnerable populations.  

Ladies and gentlemen, in 2007, four states had fall prevention coalitions that first observed Fall Prevention Awareness Day.   In 2008, the Falls Free® State Coalitions on Fall Prevention Workgroup requested that Fall Prevention Awareness Day be on the first day of fall.  Since then, many states have joined in this campaign to bring public health,  departments on again, volunteer groups, health care professionals, and more together to help solve the problem and public health issues related to the burden of falls and consequences of injury.   Reaching national attention and commitment to reduce falls,  the National Council on Aging (NCOA) assumed the leadership role through their Falls Free® Initiative for public education, and support and expand evidence-based programs and interventions. (1)  

Because some of the restrictions for stay-at-home are relaxing, September will hopefully allow you time to go outside for walks or rides in the car with family and friends.  While NCOA has so many community-based resources, one educational video that I thought would be helpful to you is Navigating Outdoor Fall Hazards.  This video includes safety tips to be aware of in your surroundings, safety tips to reduce your fall risks getting in and out of a car, and more.  here  

In addition to NCOA, CDC is dedicated to helping you manage your fall risks and keep you independent longer through their STEADI (Stopping Elderly Accidents, Deaths and Injuries) Program (2)

While I have shared some of their resources with you previously, I want to make these easily available to you – at your fingertips! 

  • Staying Independent:  Are you at risk? – a checklist to complete and discuss with your primary care provider here
  • What you can do to prevent falls – four activities you can do to prevent falls here
  • Chair Risk Exercise to strengthen your muscles to help you safely sit, stand, and walk   here
  • Education Brochure about Postural Hypotension here
  • Check for Safety Brochure – simple steps you can take to make your home safer  here

While opportunities always exist for you to share your concerns or worries about falls with others, I am hoping this message further informs you about this dedicated date, the first day of falls, so that you can learn about more resources and seek safety strategies you can implement to reduce your fall risks. 

Harmony Team’s mission aligns with CDC and NCOA to advance your safety, independence and function. With the compelling data related to the burden and consequences of falls, we know the reluctance of older adults to talk to their providers about falls and/or seek medical care due to falls.  We don’t want this to be you.  We are here to do all that we can to help reduce your fall risks, falls and increase your independence, safety and confidence.

Stay strong,  active,  and connected with your healthcare team.  Commit to learn about and implement at least one strategy to reduce your risk for falls! 

Your Harmony Team is here to help you!  

Thank you for reading this message and in advance for sharing with others.

Pat Quigley

08/27/20

References

      Accessed Aug 27, 2020

Accessed Aug 27, 2020

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