According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every 11 seconds, an older adult is treated in the emergency room for a fall and every 19 minutes, an older adult dies from a fall. Following a fall, many individuals see a decrease in their quality of life due to limitations from their injuries. Along with being a major public health issue, falls come with a heavy financial burden. According to the CDC, the total cost of fall injuries in 2014 was $31 billion.
This Friday, the first day of Fall, is the 10th Annual observance of Falls Prevention Awareness Day (FPAD). This year’s theme is “10 Years Standing Together to Prevent Falls.” There are evidence-based falls prevention programs that older adults can partake in to reduce falls. Additionally, through partnerships in the community, older adults can work to decrease fear about falling and improve balance and strength through exercise. Communities all over the country will host events to shed light on this issue and spread awareness of the opportunities and resources available for older adults.
FPAD is organized by the National Council on Aging (NCOA), the organization that houses the National Falls Prevention Resource Center. NCOA has created many useful tools, resources, and handouts to raise awareness of this pervasive issue. Their site has a wealth of information to help reduce falls and improve strength and balance.