Assessment of Fall Risk and Frequency Among Patients in the Nursing and Supportive Treatment Hospital
The aim of this study was to evaluate the patients’ fall risk and frequency in the Nursing and Supportive Treatment Hospital during the whole period of treatment. MATERIAL AND METHODS. The study was performed in the Nursing and Supportive Treatment Hospital. The patients’ inclusion criteria were written consent to participate in the study and the Mini-Mental State Examination score of >10. The patients stayed for 4 months in the Nursing and Supportive Treatment Hospital. In total, 272 patients started the survey, 53 patients died during the study period, and 219 patients were followed up and assessed during the whole hospital stay. If a patient had a fall, a special form designed by the authors was filled out. RESULTS. The majority (69.3%) of the patients were admitted to the Nursing and Supportive Treatment Hospital after their treatment in an acute care hospital. All the patients admitted to the Nursing and Supportive Treatment hospital had a fall risk: 12.3% of the patients had a moderate fall risk and 87.7% had a high fall risk. The patients’ fall risk after admission and before discharge after a 4-month period in the Nursing and Supportive Treatment Hospital was similar. Almost half (49.6%) of the patients had a fall at least once during the 4-month period of stay in hospital. The frequency of falls correlated with older age, longer hospital stay, the Barthel index, and a higher risk of fall (Morse Fall Scale); the correlations were weak although statistically significant. According to the patient opinion and the data of observation, the most frequent circumstances after a fall were wet floors (54.8%), improper footwear (52.6%), and no light during dark time periods (43.7%). CONCLUSIONS. Falls in the Nursing and Supportive Treatment Hospital remain a serious problem for the patients. Almost half of the patients had a fall at least once during a 4-month period of hospital stay. Special attention should be paid to the safe hospital environment: avoiding wet floors, assuring proper light during day and night time, and encouraging proper footwear.
Correspondence to L. Spirgienė Correspondence to L. Spirgienė, Department of Nursing and Care, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Eivenių 4, LT‑50009 Kaunas, Lithuania E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org