HIGNETT, S. ... et al, 2010. Targeting environmental factors to reduce elderly in-patient falls. Proceedings of the 1st International Conference on Human Factors and Ergonomics in Healthcare/ 3rd International Conference on Applied Human Factors and Ergonomics [AHFE], 17-20 July 2010, Miami, USA.
This paper will describe the results from two exploratory studies on un-witnessed
elderly in-patient falls in acute facilities. The first study analyzed incident reports
from England and Wales between 1 September 2006 and 31 August 2007
(n=215,784). We found a difference in the location of falls for patients described as
frail and those described as confused. This was further explored in a pilot study to
collect detailed information about contributory factors and the location of falls
through staff interviews. We found that the use of bedrails seemed to alter the
location of the fall, with falls from beds with raised rails clustered around the foot
end of the bed.