Good Example Of Falls Prevention In An Inpatient Rehabilitation Unit For Patients Over 60 Years Old Research Paper
Type of paper: Research Paper
Topic: Information, Nursing, Project, Workplace, Staff, Human Resource Management, Committee, Fall
Gaps in the existing data
The existing data has mainly focused on the general causes of falls among the elderly which includes slippery floors and general accidents as well as deteriorated health issues. However, the current data does not provide detailed information such as the variety of causes of falls based on individual patient’s psychological and physical factors such as having difficulties to adapting to the new environment once they are brought to the rehabilitation unit. In order to come up with the appropriate falls assessment tool, additional information on the scope and magnitude of falls as well as the existing strategies of mitigating the problem is essential. In addition, I need to gather adequate information on the individual patients on issues such as medical history, whether they have experienced a fall and if yes, the number and frequency of falls as well as their psychological changes once they are admitted at the rehabilitation unit. This is some of the essential data that will aid in coming up with an action-based falls assessment tool.
An effective falls assessment tool requires a careful evaluation of the current situation and this requires integration of various resources. One of the essential resources required for the success of this project is adequate time for collecting adequate data, data analysis and interpretation so as to come up with an informed action plan (Lord,2007). Collaboration between the staff and falls committee is also an essential factor that will determine the effectiveness of achieving the expected result based on their willingness to participate in the project activities.
As a way of motivating the staff, various activities such as social meeting for a pizza or a cup of tea could be organized as a way of opening up communication and interaction among the staff members. This is a suitable way of encouraging the staff from other departments to open up and share any information they might have concerning the causes of falls. Finally, money is another essential resource required for the completion of the project. This could be needed to make adjustments especially in adjusting the current floor conditions among other necessary adjustments.
Activities with the Mentor (Preceptor) for this project so far.
Having established a safe committee, assessment of various gaps that exists in the effort to prevent falls in the rehabilitation unit has been simplified as the committee members are actively involved in contributing ideas on the issue. Several gaps and useful resources have been identified with the help of the mentor. We have also succeeded in implementing some fall prevention measure within the unit and this has led to the reduction in the number of falls to one person the previous week. In addition, the committee has increased in number as staff turn-up is higher. However, a lot of changes need to be done as soon as possible and with as little resources as possible.
The global objective of this project is to’ design Falls Assessment Tool that will be used to identify and prevent fall related risks’. Using the TSA’s knowledge, skills and attitude that define evidence based practice as provided by QSEN; I have been able to accomplish several measures. Such measures include explaining the situation to various staff members and influencing them to participate in the safe committee so as to deal with the falls problem collectively as it is a problem that requires interdisciplinary collaboration (Pierce, 2005).
Useful additional research
This project seeks to implement evidence based practices and tool that could be used in preventing falls in the elderly patients. This requires additional research in indentifying ways that the affected stakeholders namely the institution, patient’s family and the patients themselves could participate in mitigating the problem. This includes coming up with ways of making the patient understand the scenario as well as collaborate in sharing information that could prevent a fall as well as come up with strategies of encouraging the family to provide emotional support to their elderly patients among other factors. In addition, more research on polypharmacy is an essential factor that could help in determining the impacts of drugs used by patients in alleviating cases of falls and how this could be controlled.
Association of Rehabilitation Nurses- http://www.rehabnurse.org/about/content/About-ARN-index.html.
QSEN Institute. http://qsen.org/competencies/quality-improvement-resources-2/.
Tinetti, M.E. (2003). “Preventing falls in elderly persons”. New England Journal of Medicine, Vol. 348 (1), 42-49.
Cannard, G. (2011). Fall Prevention for Older People: A Survival Guide. NY: Paragon Publishing.
Lord, S. et al. (2007). Falls in Older People: Risk Factors and Strategies for Prevention. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Pierce, L. (2005). “Rehabilitation Nurses Working as Collaborative Research Teams”. Rehabilitation Nursing Vol. 30(4). Retrieved from http://www.rehabnurse.org/pdf/RNC_244.pdf