Taranaki residents urged to stand up to falls

3 August 2015

Taranaki residents are being encouraged to undertake a home safety check, with figures1 showing 410 people over 50 years of age in the district health board region were hospitalised because of a fall in the community in 2013.

The Health Quality & Safety Commission (the Commission) and ACC are encouraging simple checks to prevent falls at home – such as ensuring electrical cords are stowed away safely, rugs lie flat and are non-slip and there are hand rails in the bath and shower.

Commission falls clinical lead Sandy Blake says when older people fall – even if they are not hurt – it can have a big impact on their confidence.

“Older people may start to restrict what they do, because they are worried about falling again. But there is some evidence to suggest keeping active can help reduce the risk of falls, or make a fall less serious.

“It’s far better to prevent falls in the first place by having a really good look around your house and grounds to make sure there is no clutter, electrical cords to trip over or slippery surfaces, and that there is plenty of light to see by at night.”

The home safety checklist can be downloaded from ACC’s website (www.acc.govt.nz). People who fill in the checklist and freepost it to the Commission with the number of hazards they found will go into the draw to win one of ten $100 Pharmacy Guild vouchers.

The competition is part of the Commission’s Open for better care campaign, which is currently focusing on reducing harm from falls in the community. Each year, almost 18,500 people nationally over the age of 50 are hospitalised as a result of a fall.

For more information
Greer Lean, communications advisor, Taranaki District Health Board | 027 801 9084 | greer.lean@tdhb.org.nz
Dylan Moran, communications co-ordinator, Health Quality & Safety Commission | 021 813 591 | dylan.moran@hqsc.govt.nz


1 Figures quoted from the Health Quality & Safety Commission’s Atlas of Healthcare Variation


Last updated: Monday, August 31, 2015

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