Falls Free® Initiative

You might think you’re never going to fall, but the truth is 1 in 4 older adults fall every year in the U.S.  Every 11 seconds, an older adult is seen in an emergency department for a fall-related injury.  The good news is that most falls are preventable. Start by learning 6 easy steps:

Falls remain the leading cause of injury death for older Americans. Falls threaten seniors’ safety and independence and generate enormous economic and personal costs. CDC’s Injury Center monitors falls, fall-related injuries, and associated costs, reporting:

  • One-fourth of Americans aged 65+ falls each year.
  • Every 11 seconds, an older adult is treated in the emergency room for a fall; every 19 minutes, an older adult dies from a fall.
  • Falls result in more than 2.8 million injuries treated in emergency departments annually, including over 800,000 hospitalizations and more than 27,700 deaths.
  • Adjusted for inflation, the annual direct medical costs for fall injuries are $31 billion. Hospital costs account for two-thirds of the total.
  • By 2020, the annual direct and indirect cost of fall injuries is expected to reach $67.7 billion.

In addition to pain and suffering, and the high cost of rehabilitation, falls with or without injury also carry a heavy quality of life impact. A growing number of older adults fear falling and, as a result, often self-limit activities and social engagements. Resulting limitations can result in further physical decline, depression, social isolation, and feelings of helplessness.

This potentially bleak future for aging Americans is not inevitable; evidence-based interventions that target individual risk factors for falling have been shown to reduce falls and promote falls self-efficacy.

Stay safe with these falls prevention tips!  pdfDownload the Flyer: 6 Steps to Prevent a Fall

Adapted from the National Council on Aging.  Used with Permission