Patient education to prevent falls among older hospital inpatients : a randomized controlled trial

Haines, T.P., Hill, A.-M., Hill, K.D., McPhail, S., Oliver, D., Brauer, S., Hoffmann, T., & Beer, C. (2011) Patient education to prevent falls among older hospital inpatients : a randomized controlled trial. Archives of Internal Medicine, 171(6), pp. 516-524.

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Falls are a common adverse event during hospitalization of older adults, and few interventions have been shown to prevent then.


This study was a 3-group randomized trial to evaluate the efficacy of 2 forms of multimedia patient education compared with usual care for the prevention of in-hospital falls. Older hospital patients (n = 1206) admitted to a mixture of acute (orthopedic, respiratory, and medical) and subacute (geriatric and neurorehabilitation) hospital wards at 2 Australian hospitals were recruited between January 2008 and April 2009. The interventions were a multimedia patient education program based on the health-belief model combined with trained health professional follow-up (complete program), multi-media patient education materials alone (materials only), and usual care (control). Falls data were collected by blinded research assistants by reviewing hospital incident reports, hand searching medical records, and conducting weekly patient interviews.


Rates of falls per 1000 patient-days did not differ significantly between groups (control, 9.27; materials only, 8.61; and complete program, 7.63). However, there was a significant interaction between the intervention and presence of cognitive impairment. Falls were less frequent among cognitively intact patients in the complete program group (4.01 per 1000 patient-days) than among cognitively intact patients in the materials-only group (8.18 per 1000 patient-days) (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.51; 95% confidence interval, 0.28-0.93]) and control group (8.72 per 1000 patient-days) (adjusted hazard ratio, 0.43; 95% confidence interval, 0.24-0.78).


Multimedia patient education with trained health professional follow-up reduced falls among patients with intact cognitive function admitted to a range of hospital wards.

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ID Code: 39866
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Accidental Falls, Elderly, Education, Multi-media, Prevention
DOI: 10.1001/archinternmed.2010.444
ISSN: 0003-9926
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Deposited On: 02 Feb 2011 04:49
Last Modified: 04 Nov 2013 01:35

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