During a hospital stay, older adults often experience decreased mobility while confined to their rooms or beds.1,2 This may increase the risk of functional decline, poor functional outcomes after discharge, and hospital readmissions.2 Older adults who have had a hospital stay are more likely to experience a fall in the first month after their discharge.3 Hospitals can help prevent falls by incorporating a fall prevention program into their routine clinical practice.
The STEADI (Stopping Elderly Accidents, Deaths, & Injuries) initiative developed CDC STEADI: Best Practices for Developing an Inpatient Program to Prevent Older Adult Falls after Discharge. The purpose of this guide is to help inpatient teams integrate a fall prevention program into their existing workflow and clinical practice. The guide includes 10 practical steps informed by research findings and provider experiences to:
- Decrease patient falls during and after hospital stays
- Promote better collaboration with external providers for post-discharge care
- Improve hospital processes and records
- Identify and manage medications that increase patient fall risk
- STEADI Clinical Resources
- Check for Safety Brochure (English pdf icon[PDF – 2.6 MB] | Spanish pdf icon[PDF – 1.3 MB])
- Partner Success Stories
- Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Preventing Falls in Hospitalsexternal icon
- Age-Friendly Health Systems | Center | AHAexternal icon
- Babine RL, Hyrkas KE, McKenzie CG, Wierman HR. Mobilizing Older Adults: A Multi-site, Exploratory and Observational Study on Patients Enrolled in the Hospital Elder Life Program (HELP). Geriatric Nursing. 2019;40(3):239–245.
- Zisberg A, Shadmi E, Gur-Yaish N, et al. Hospital-Associated Functional Decline: The Role of Hospitalization Processes Beyond Individual Risk Factors. Journal of the American Geriatric Society. 2015;63(1):55–62.
- Mahoney JE, Palta M, Johnson J, et al. Temporal Association Between Hospitalization and Rate of Falls After Discharge. Arch Intern Med. 2000;160(18):2788–2795. doi:10.1001/archinte.160.18.2788