Provide a brief summary of the practice problem

Megan Dixon

WednesdayMay 19 at 8:52pmManage Discussion Entry

Dr. Bartelt and class,

Identify the information hub and topic selected. Provide a brief summary of the practice problem:

Unintentional injury is a category within the global burden of diseases that affect millions of people every year. In 2017, 55.9 million people died from a global disease burden (Roser & Ritchie, 2016). Some of the global burden of diseases include cardiovascular disease, cancers, unintentional injuries (falls, fire, and drowning), communicable diseases, respiratory diseases, and diabetes. In particular, falls greatly affect older individuals resulting in increased emergency room visits, hospitalizations, and death among this population. Globally, falls are the second leading cause of death for unintentional injury death resulting in approximately 684,000 fall deaths each year and 37.3 million falls that required medical attention (World Health Organization, 2021).

Compare and contrast national and state levels of data. Use the state of your residence as a basis for the comparison:

On a national level, millions of people aged 65 and over are treated in the emergency department due to falls. Approximately three million people were treated in the emergency room due to a fall, and over 950,000 people were hospitalized for falls costing more than $50 billion in 2015 (Moreland et al., 2018; Florence et al., 2018). The death rate for falls among older adults has increased by 31% from 2007 to 2016 in 30 states and the District of Columbia (Burns & Kakara, 2018).

In South Carolina, 26.8% of older adults age 65 and older had a fall in 2018 compared to 27.5% of adults in the United States (Moreland et al., 2018; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2020). The age-adjusted fall death rate for individuals 65 and over in South Carolina was 67 deaths per 100,000 in 2018. The total costs of falls in South Carolina were $671 million in 2014 (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2020).

Describe how data from your home state compare to data from other states:

In analyzing the 2014 data for total costs of falls, other states spent a larger amount of money on doctor’s visits, hospitalizations, nursing home care, rehabilitation, and other services compared to South Carolina’s total cost of $671 million. For example, the cost of falls in Florida and California were $3.9 billion and $4.4 billion, respectively (Haddad et al., 2019). While states such as Alaska and North Dakota spending on falls were less than South Carolina, totaling $48 million and $91 million, respectively (Haddad et al., 2019).

Identify one national organization or intervention related to your selected topic that is addressing the burden of this disease. Describe the impact of the organization or intervention to improve outcomes:

The Administration for Community Living (ACL) is an agency under the Health and Human Services division that supports older adults and adults with disabilities by working with community-based organizations to provide health and wellness education to the adults they serve. The ACL is committed to investing in evidence-based fall prevention community-based programs for older adults to implement fall prevention strategies to decrease the incidence of falls. In 2014, the ACL found the National Fall Prevention Resource Center, which provides education on fall prevention and implements evidence-based community fall prevention programs, resulting in a decrease in the incidence of falls among older adults (Kulinski et al., 2017). Some of these community programs include “Stay Safe, Stay Active,” “Tai Chi for Arthritis,” and “Stepping On.”

Share your professional experience related to the topic:

As the designated falls champion nurse on my unit, I worked with other staff members to implement strategies and interventions to decrease the fall rate on my unit. We assessed each patient’s risk for falls. If patients met the criteria, the nurse would place a special armband on them, so everyone was aware that the patient was a high risk for falls. Also, we would place those patients who were very high risk on special low beds. Patients were rounded every hour by either the nurse or nurse tech and constantly educated during every encounter to use the call light before getting out of bed. These, along with other interventions, helped to decrease the fall rates some on the unit.


Burns, E. & Kakara, R. (2018). Deaths from falls among persons aged ≥65 years- United States, 2007-2016. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 67(18), 509-514.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020, July 9). Cost of older adult falls.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020, July 9). Older adult falls reported by state.

Florence, C. S., Bergen, G., Atherly, A., Burns, E., Stevens, J., & Drake, C. (2018). Medical costs of fatal and nonfatal falls in older adults. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 66(4), 693-698. (Links to an external site.)

Haddad, Y. K., Bergen, G., & Florence, C. S. (2019). Estimating the economic burden related to older adult falls by state. Journal of Public Health Management and Practice, 25(2), 17-24. (Links to an external site.)

Kulinski, K., DiCocco, C., Skowronski, S., & Sprowls, P. (2017). Advancing community-based falls prevention programs for older adults- The work of administration of community living/administration on aging. Frontiers in Public Health, 5(4). (Links to an external site.)

Moreland, B., Kakara, R., & Henry, A. (2020). Trends in nonfatal falls and fall-related injuries among adults aged ≥65 years- United States, 2012-2018. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 69(27), 875-881.

Roser, M. & Ritchie, H. (2016). Burden of disease. Our World in Data.

World Health Organization. (2021, April 26). Falls. (Links to an external site.)