Report tallies high cost of seniors' falls
A new study released by the province shows that fall-related injuries sustained by seniors are costing Nova Scotia's health-care system $72 million a year.
The report, issued Wednesday, looked at data from 2000 to 2004 and found that seniors who needed treatment for falls stayed in the hospital 40 per cent longer than seniors admitted for other reasons.
Ten per cent of the 2.1 million hospital days used by seniors in that period were because of falls — and 40 per cent of admissions to nursing homes were precipitated by falls.
An average of 76 seniors in the province die from falls every year, according to the report.
Twenty per cent of seniors die within one year of a hip fracture, saidPam Talbot, the project co-ordinator for Dalhousie University's population health research unit.
The injury prevention and control co-ordinator with the Department of Health Promotion and Protection maintains that falls are not an inevitable part of aging.
Julian Young said the department plans to help post-secondary educators learn more about fall prevention and risk management in their training of health-care providers.