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CALL TO ACTION
Prevent & Reduce Falls
Working Towards Our Goals:
Every year one out of three adults aged 65 or older will experience a fall, but less than half will tell their health care professional. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), "one out of five falls causes a serious injury such as broken bones or a head injury." Falls and the resulting injuries limit mobility, contribute to social isolation and cause premature death. Each year 2.8 million nonfatal falls among older adults are treated in emergency departments and more than 800,000 of these patients were hospitalized.
Even if they are not injured, many individuals who experience a fall develop a fear of falling. This fear may cause them to limit their activities, which leads to reduced mobility and loss of physical fitness, and in turn increases their actual risk of falling.
Reduced physical functioning also causes other physiological and mental changes that can lead to a downward spiral in a person’s overall health condition that is difficult to reverse.
According to the 2016 United Health Foundation, America’s Health Rankings Senior Report, Oklahoma is ranked as 38th in the nation for falls in adults aged 65 and over. Hip fractures are even higher at 7.7 per 1,000 Medicare beneficiaries, putting Oklahoma’s ranking at number 50 for this measure. Unintentional falls resulted in death for 92.3 per 100,000 Oklahoma adults in 2015 compared to 86.5 per 100,000 in 2014.
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