GUEST BLOG – Philip Swift: Falls Prevention Awareness

Falls, the majority of which occur at home, are the leading cause of injuries or death for those over aged 65, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). BAYADA Home Health Care – a leading national provider of home health care services – offers important suggestions to help people remain safe at home and reduce their risk of falling.

“It’s important for seniors to accept that sometimes they need help to remain safe at home,”

said Sharon L. Driscoll, RN, CRRN, director in the nursing office at BAYADA. “We found that

the number one reason for falls in the home is lack of supervision or assistance.  Not

surprisingly, people want to be independent, even as they age, although for some this can be

dangerous without help. We’ve trained our home health care professionals to better identify clients who are at risk for falling, communicate those risk factors to the client, and implement strategies and interventions in the home environment to help prevent falls whenever possible.”

Driscoll continues, “In addition, it’s critical that seniors play a role in keeping themselves safe

at home. They need to understand their risk factors and how they may need to make

adjustments in their home to avoid falling. They should also pay close attention to how they

feel every day – for example, if they are dizzy or weak – to determine if they may be at risk

for a fall, or if they need to call their doctor or go to the emergency room.”

Joseph Daly, PT, MBA, MHA, director of rehabilitation for BAYADA, notes that one of

BAYADA’s biggest challenges is convincing seniors of the potential risk that exists in their


“Many seniors have been in the same home for 30 or more years, and convincing them to

rearrange furniture, install a second banister, or remove throw rugs can be a lot to ask,” he

said. “For example, grab bars can help prevent falls in the bathroom, but many seniors can’t

afford the cost of purchasing and installing them. Helping seniors get assistance from

community programs, neighbors, or church groups is an excellent way to help prevent

avoidable falls.”

Philip Swift is the Community Liaison for Bayada Home Health Care, one of the largest providers of at-home personal care professionals. Please feel free to contact him at:

(212) 354-9400

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