The Falls Free Coalition
The Falls Free Coalition. There is a growing number of falls and related injuries among the elderly. One group, the Falls Free Coalition, is trying to reduce the risk.
The concern is that falls and subsequent injury are a burden on the individual, on society, and on the healthcare system. One out of three senior citizens falls each year, with the numbers rising to one in two after the age of 80.
Falls are one of the leading causes of injury deaths as well as the cause of injuries needing hospital admissions for trauma. Often these injuries are severe enough to reduce the independence of the individual.
The Falls Free Coalition is a group of organizations, professional associations, agencies, and coalitions that are dedicated to reducing the frequency of falls and subsequent injuries in older adults.
The original lists of members include the invitees of the Falls Free Summit in 2004. The Summit created the National Action Plan, which represents the best ideas of the attending organizations and experts. The Coalition was then formed to bring awareness of this issue to the public, including promoting risk factor identification and intervention and implementing the strategies from the Plan.
The hope was to make the issue known to the public so that the number of falls and injuries could be reduced. Workgroups are formed when needed and appropriate to address specific issues. The National Action Plan covers several topics, but has some highlights.
They want to create web-based clearinghouses that will distribute information on fall prevention. They want to increase how many adults have a medication review by a healthcare provider or pharmacist, which will also include fall prevention as is related to the medications they are taking. T
hey want to plan a consumer education campaign that will raise the awareness of falls that come from medication use. They want to identify the best strategies that older adults can use to prevent falls at home or when they are out, and encourage the use of home modifications that can help prevent falls while at the same time being attractive to look at.
They also are taking preventive measures to stay healthy and detect diseases. They are screened regularly for breast cancer, cervical cancer, colorectal cancers, depression, prostate cancer and diabetes with its many complications. Poor health does not have to be a part of the aging process. There are effective ways to prevent or delay chronic conditions like arthritis, depression, osteoporosis, and urinary incontinence.
They want to promote fall prevention at all levels of awareness in the United States, from local levels on up. There are several benefits to joining the Falls Free Coalition. Member organizations get national attention through media releases, the internet, and national presentation. They are also able to easily access other members, and receive the bimonthly electronic newsletter highlighting major events.
The newsletter also includes any new research, programs, tools, or resources that might be useful to members, and is archived online. The Falls Free Coalition is also promoting the development of coalitions in each state, as well as getting existing coalitions and organizations to partner as well. The best groups to join are organizations and associations that have an interest or a mission in preventing falls and injuries.
Do some weight bearing exercises. This is very important for women, because the weight exercises will help build stronger bone,s and can help prevent osteoporosis, or lessen the effects of it.
They also need to be willing to support the National Action Plan. Requirements include openness to working with other members and being wiling to inform the Coalition of the activities that they are doing. If you are a member of such a group, have the group leaders contact the Coalition for more information on what you can do to help.
Healthy Aging Issues Today