New computer program may help prevent falls


November 2, 2010

A new computer program installed in hospitals that analyzes a patient's risk for a fall has proven to cut the chance of an injury by almost half, reports.

The application relied on a system which evaluated senior patients for their risk factor and then processed this information to display how much walking assistance and physical therapy would be necessary to minimize the chance of a fall.

The program was used to assess 10,000 patients over a total of 48,000 days spent at the hospital. Researchers found that the technology may play an important part in preventing falls in the hospital.

"To our knowledge, this is the first fall prevention clinical trial that provides evidence for using a specific HIT [health information technology] intervention to reduce falls in short-stay hospitals," the researchers wrote, according to the news source.

While prevention is crucial when a senior is preparing for falls, it can also be important to have an elderly alert system at home. This device guarantees that, in the case of an injury, an older adult can immediately send a medical alert to a hospital for assistance.

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