Evaluating the health and wellbeing outcomes of older adults referred to the Falls Specialist Program at Armadale Kalamunda Group Health Service.
Armadale Kalamunda Group Health Service
Coordinating Principal Investigator: Alison Reading
Co-Investigators: Professor Anne-Marie Hill, A/Prof Dale Edgar, Dr Nicholas Waldron, Mrs Andrea Whyte
Falls are a leading cause of injury and hospitalisation among older Australians. Falls in older adults have a major community impact and healthcare burden in Western Australia with someone being admitted to hospital with a fall-related injury every 17 minutes in 2020. Falls are also a significant concern for older patients who are attending hospital for other reasons. The Falls Specialist Program (FSP) at Armadale Kalamunda Group (AKG) is led by both a Senior Occupational Therapist and Senior Physiotherapist.
The program engages patients who have had no previous comprehensive allied health input to address their falls. Interventions are customised through evidence-based educational conversations; home visits addressing individual falls risk factors; and a home-based progressive exercise program. Anecdotal and high-level data indicate this program is effective at reducing falls for older adults in community dwellings.
This project aims to evaluate the FSP using combined prospective patient-voice and quantitative methods. Over a 9-month period, consumer and staff interviews will be conducted to enrich the evaluation of the program outcomes, including number of falls per month; ED presentation rates and comparative cost analysis with those who do not attend the Falls Specialist Program and Armadale Kalamunda Group Health Service.