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2017 falls prevention survey for health professionals

Thank you to the 246 health professionals who completed the 2017 falls prevention survey.

We are happy to report that the majority of participants (95.8%) discussed falls prevention with their patients/clients/community members, with the top falls prevention strategies discussed being: removing hazards (95.1%), being physically active (90.6%) and wearing safe footwear (89.3%).

The least nominated strategies discussed were maintaining an active mind (68.9%), eating healthy food (62.6%) and getting exposure to sunlight (58.9%). Due to the reported variance in the discussion of falls prevention strategies, Stay On Your Feet® will continue to work to increase the awareness of the importance of all falls prevention behaviours.

Respondents reported a range of enablers to discussing falls prevention with their patients/clients/community members, including; their knowledge of falls prevention (73.7%), the use of printed resources (64.3%) and their skills to identify falls prevention strategies (63.5%). However, some respondents (24.9%) did experience some barriers to discussing falls preventing including their clients cognition (38 respondents) and time (31 respondents). Unfortunately, these barriers are beyond the direct control of Stay On Your Feet®, however we will continue to develop and provide relevant falls prevention materials and professional development events and advocate for the necessary resources to support falls prevention activities.

In addition to the health professional’s survey, community members completed a falls prevention survey. Of the 274 community members who completed the survey almost half (46.3%) had experienced a slip, trip or fall in the last 12 months. The main nominated reasons for the slip, trip or fall were carelessness (42.9%), uneven surfaces (38.9%) and getting older (27.8%). There was a high level of agreement by participants (84.2%) that falls are preventable, however some participants believe risk of falling is a part of aging and diminishing independence. This is an attitude that Stay On Your Feet® will to address as it makes the uptake of intervention strategies more difficult.

Your responses, along with the community member’s responses, will help guide our future direction, so thank you to all respondents.

 

Stay On Your Feet® is provided by Injury Matters and funded by the Western Australian Department of Health.

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Government of Western Australia Department of Health Injury Matters
Injury Matters acknowledge the Whadjuk Noongar people as the traditional custodians of the land on which we live and work, and recognises Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples continuing connection to land, waters and community across Western Australia.