The first collaborative project funded by MARC is now complete. This project tackled the challenge of preventing falls in hospitals, a key concern for health services, health professionals, older people and their carers. Falls in hospitals are associated with longer length of stay and poorer functional outcomes for those affected so finding interventions that work is vital. This project implemented and tested a falls prevention intervention based on locally derived data, rather than using the more traditional “one-size-fits-all” approach.
The project found that patients do not think they are at risk of falling whilst in hospital because nurses will them safe; a roadmap for use in complex systems can reduce falls in hospitals; staff can be engaged in collecting data and in selecting and implementing strategies for their unit or ward based on the data; and falls prevention should be considered cyclical and ongoing in line with the local context.
Findings from the study are being collated and are being presented at different locations, with manuscripts being written for peer review publication.
Consideration is being given to a Randomised Controlled Trial.
Grant applications have been submitted to fund a larger study.