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Awarded Research Cooperative Agreement to Prevent Unintentional Injuries

Dissemination of a Community Tai Chi Program for Falls

FOA Number: CE05-029 - Dissemination Research on Fall Prevention: Development & Testing of an Exercise Program Package
Project Period: 9/1/05-8/31/08
Application/Grant Number: 1-U49-CE000711-01
Principal Investigator: Li Fuzhong, PhD
Senior Research Scientist
Oregon Research Institute
1715 Franklin Boulevard
Eugene, Oregon 97403
Email: fuzhongl@ori.org

Description

Falls are one of the leading causes of injury-related deaths among older adults. Previous research findings from randomized controlled trials have demonstrated the efficacy of Tai Chai exercise in improving balance and decreasing falls among older adults. However, it is not clear whether the general community can readily implement or adopt these training protocols despite evidence of their tested efficacy. Thus, program evaluation research is needed to translate effective fall interventions into a program that can be implemented into a community-based setting.

The proposed research will translate an evidence-based Tai Chai program into a user-friendly resource package for community with adults, ages 60 and over who are physically mobile with or without assistive devices. In collaboration with local nonprofit senior service providers and an expert panel, a process evaluation approach will be used to translate, implement, and evaluate this proposed fall prevention program and evaluation instruments. Targeted end users of the program will be community-dwelling adults ages 60 and over, who will participate fully in all stages of program evaluation. A subsequent 12-weeks program will be implemented in two separate communities in Oregon and will be evaluated by participating older adults and by senior service providers, with respect to reach, adoption, implementation, and maintenance. This project responds to CDC’s call for efforts to disseminate efficacious intervention research that has “real world” impact on decreasing falls in the community. The results of this translation and dissemination research will provide an effective, evidence-based falls prevention package for older adults that can be implemented into the community setting. This research also provides important public health information about dissemination procedures for program reach, adoption, feasibility, and acceptability.

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