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Falls kill about 1,800 U.S. nursing home residents annually

Placing an elderly loved one in a Florida assisted living facility or nursing home is rarely easy. However, you probably do so while believing that he or she will receive more comprehensive care while living there than you or other friends or family members could reasonably provide. If your elderly loved one also suffers from mobility issues, which is quite common among older Americans, it may concern you to know just how frequently assisted living facility and nursing home residents fall and ultimately succumb to their injuries.

It may alarm you, too, to learn that older Americans are actually substantially more likely to fall and die because of fall-related injuries when they live in nursing homes, as opposed to most residential alternatives. According to Industrial Safety & Hygiene News, adults ages 65 and above living in nursing homes are four times more likely to pass away due to fall-related injuries than those 65 and above who live at home by themselves or alongside other loved ones.

Troubling statistics

Statistics show that most nursing homes across America that have about 100 beds report between 100 and 200 resident falls every year, but this figure only covers reported falls, suggesting that there are many more that go unreported. Additionally, as many as three-quarters of all nursing home residents fall annually. Many of those falls lead to serious injuries and fatalities.

How falls can affect older adults

In fact, somewhere between 10% and 20% of all nursing home falls result in serious injuries. Many fall-related injuries can make it increasingly difficult for older Americans to get around, care for themselves and socialize. Many nursing home residents who fall also become fearful of falling again in the future, which can cause them to withdraw and isolate themselves.

Assisted living facilities and nursing homes should have safety protocols in place to reduce the number of residents who fall and suffer serious injuries. It is also essential that these facilities consistently maintain adequate staff to ensure residents get the mobility assistance they need when they need it.

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