Wellness and Prevention Program to Prevent Falls In the Elderly

Published: 2018-07-27 06:54:25
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Sewanee University of the South
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Essay
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1) Wellness Essay Introduction

Falls gets pointed out as the common causes of both the fatal and non-fatal injuries which lead to various complications among the adults in the United States of America. The aspect has triggered community- based organizations to initiate programs which offer vital roles in promoting healthy living standards within the community. Their primary intent gets based on preventing falls among the elderly through the recognition of an effective- based fall prevention programs. Therefore, the paper gets founded on wellness and prevention program that will assist in preventing falls among the elderly in a community-based environment.

2) Target population

It gets noted that adults of 65 years and above are the most affected by incidences of falls in the United States of America. It equally gets depicted that nearly 10, 000 people turn 65 years every day (Goodwin et al., 2014). The trend presents a worrying situation considering the large cases of those acquiring fatal and non- fatal injuries which are based on falls. Apart from the mentioned, there also exist the aspect of financial burden which should get considered. According to the 2012- 2014 average hospital financial statistics, it got noted that the charge per hospital admission for fall injuries among the elderly was approximate $ 12, 731 for an average of 4 days. The emergency section also cost at least $ 750 per visit. The aspect depicts that cases of falls are not only presenting physical injuries and other related complications but also brings into the picture the financial burden on the elderly. Many at times, the old misconstrue cases of falls as a natural phenomenon which comes as an aging process, and nothing may get done to mitigate the situation. Therefore, the program targets older adults of about two thousand individuals who age bracket lies at 65 years and above.

3) Evidence supporting the program

Cases of falls present major threats to the health and wellbeing of the elderly. Statistics show that every year at least a third of the old experience cases of falls. It also gets depicted that individuals who have fallen before are likely to fall twice or thrice in the future. Therefore, with the risk surrounding the situation, the program gets viewed as a vital consideration to mitigate cases of falls among the elderly in a community-based setting. The second point to support the program gets noted on the devastating situation that it presents (Gusi et al., 2012). The fatal injuries which may get acquired are enough proof of devastation. The situation leads to prolonged hospitalization of an older adult accompanied with limited movement to allow smooth healing process. 

Additionally, it leads to both the physical and emotional pain to the affected older adult. The assertion also justifies the reason why it is usually recommended that an older adult who fell victim should spend at least one year of recovering in a long- term care facility. Some of the victims may not get able to live independent lives again. While in the long-term care facility, the person will acquire high standard care and also counseling sessions which will assist to quickening the recovery process. Another reason on the vitality of the program gets founded on the risk factors associated with falls. (Gusi et al., 2012). Some of the factors among the elderly a weakness in muscles and balances complications among others. The next factors get depicted on the side effects that may occur after long medications and even development of other chronic conditions like stroke. At some point, the elderly may lose sensitivity in their feet hence becoming unable to move independently. 

The fourth justification on the importance of the program is of behavioral and environmental risk factors. Behavioral risk factors are associated with inactivity and alcohol use at old age. The environmental risk factors revolve around poor lighting and poorly designed public spaces (Lovarini, Clemson & Dean, 2013). In most cases, for an older adult to fall, an association gets noted between two risk factors. For example, poor lighting and influence of alcohol will lead not only to the fall of an older adult but any other individual. This section, thus, validates the need for the program to get taken to mitigate the cases of falls which may result in fatal and non- fatal injuries.

Factors to Consider Before Starting the Communitybased Programs

The first element gets founded on determining the community need. For example, considering the information or data about cases of falls among the elderly. The next issue is on considering the available support for the program. The mentioned should consider the number of volunteers, staffs and the old clients. The third point gets based on the considerations of the existing programs and services that have made attempts at addressing the issue of falls and have not been able to address the subject competently. The other factors are in determining the readiness of the product and the identification of the available resources (Lovarini, Clemson & Dean, 2013).

In considering the readiness put in place for the program, it is important to note the funding available for the program. Since this program is community-based, the funds will cost approximately $ 20, 000 and it will last for a week. The estimated cost includes even the allowances for the non- volunteers and another cost for primary needs. Examples of the primary needs include; the cost of foodstuffs for the team and accommodation services (Mirelman et al., 2013). The program will also not stop even after educating the elderly on their wellness and how to mitigate the subject issue. The aspect may raise the question on the long- term funding program to see to it that the program gets sustained in the future. The long- term funds will get acquired through government and non- government organizations support. On the part of the available resources, the program possesses enough human as well as financial power. Its future resources are equally catered for as already depicted in the earlier sections.

4) The Program

Wellness and Prevention Program to Prevent Falls In the Elderly

Considering the fact of basing the program in a community setting, most of its prevention strategies should get applicable in the environment of setting. The first prevention strategy gets founded on exercise. The program educates the elderly on home- based exercise initiatives to improve their standard of measure regarding their balance. Exercise will strengthen their muscles and help in retaining their balance whenever they are about to fall. In a case where an elderly who has been exercising falls, he may not end up acquiring fatal injuries due to the strengthened muscles. The strategy also possesses the advantage of the setting and can easily get implemented by the old and the community as a whole. The community must also play a role to ensure that the program becomes successful. They must offer continuous encouragement to the elderly individuals to conduct their home based exercises to prolong their independence in life (Mirelman et al., 2013). In a scenario where some older adults may not have the ability to build an exercise facility in their homes. The community should initiate a project of building a universal exercise center where any older adult can have their exercises. The depicted will ensure cases of falls gets mitigated by at least fifty percent. The evidence on the assertion is pointed out by the increase in fitness of the elderly and their regular maintenance of balance. 

The next prevention strategy gets founded on educating the community on the demerits of behavioral and environmental factors which are related to cases of falls among the elderly. The major behavioral factors get depicted on alcohol consumption at old age. The program will educate the elderly on the serious implications that the habit may bring to their health. The first issue gets based on the health complication which results in body weakness. Alcohol consumption among older adults may lead to chronic conditions such as liver cirrhosis, ulcers and other related disorders (Mirelman et al., 2013). The combination of the complications is likely to weaken their body hence interfering with their balance mechanism. Their muscles may also become weak thus unable to sustain a steady state of balance. They must, therefore, avoid the habit of mitigating cases of falls in their age bracket by at least fifty percent. The community must equally play a role in ensuring that they are discouraged from taking to such habits to ensure the safety of their health. The community should also recognize that whenever an older adult falls and gets hospitalized, the burden remains with them. Therefore, they must endeavor to take it upon themselves and ensure the safety of the older adults. 

On the part of environmental factors, both the community and the elderly individuals must join hands and ensure that they tackle the environmental issues as a team. The community must provide proper lighting, especially at nights to mitigate cases of falls which may get related to poor lighting. The elderly at their individual households must also ensure that their houses are properly lit at any time of the day or night. The depicted will enable them to possess a clear vision of their surrounding hence unable to fall easily. The program will also train the community on technical assistance techniques to the older adults that will keep them fit and unable to fall (Gillespie et al., 2012). Some of the skills get based on how to assist those who fail to walk steadily to attain stability and even those with instability in sitting. 

Apart from the already depicted education, the program will also hire an educator who will educate the older adults about taking life positively and removing the norm that falls gets associated with old age. They will get taught to consider the value of sustaining their independence in life. They should, therefore, avoid stress which may interfere with their concentration and hence end up hitting themselves against objects and finally falling. They will also get educated on the balanced diet which will ensure their well- being and maintenance of a healthy standard of living. They should take food rich in iron and vitamin not ruling out proteins, and other nutrition's to give their body the required nutrients (Mirelman et al., 2013). The older adults will also get encouraged to engage in reasonable physical activities which will keep their bodies fit, though the depicted will act as an addition to the exercises and fitness training. The education will also restore to them their state of dignity as important members of the community.

5) The program plan

According to the current research on the wellness and prevention of falls among the elderly, it gets pointed out that despite attempts made by other programs, cases of falls have risen. Some of the evidence-based practices used in included universal education which got offered to both the elderly and the community as a whole. The practice got noted as ineffective since it did not provide adequate information to the group in question. Some of the effective evidence based practices which were used before and proved useful are those of provision of exercising services and principal address on behavioral and environmental factors among others (Gillespie et al., 2012). The evidence for the key points gets noted in the mitigation of falls cases due to their provision of stability and restoration of the ability of the muscles. 

6) Collaboration

The program will partner with other community members who possess skills and resources relevant to it (Gillespie et al., 2012). For example, on the issue of finance, it will partner with the organizations which do not form part of the government. At some point, it may also partner with the government to acquire additional funds. In the part of community members, it will partner with the community volunteers for the program to become a success. It will also buy the expertise of the educator who will educate the old adults on how to live healthily and with the sustenance status of independence.

The Organization and Management Structure

The organization and management structure is based on both in- built and acquired leadership. There are leaders within the organization who will assist in facilitating the program together with the educator whose services have been bought to educate the old adults. As mentioned in the collaborative section, the financial structure remains the same. The program is equally based on a partnership basis and is committed to achieving its intent with fidelity (Gillespie et al., 2012).

7) Information Technology

The program will incorporate technology in disseminating information between the volunteers in the remote areas of the community. The statistics of cases of falls will equally get typed by one of the volunteers and stored in one of the portable computers for further analysis (Gillespie et al., 2012). The elderly will equally get encouraged to visit various websites to search and learn more about how to avoid falls at old age. The community will also get encouraged to utilize the website to learn how to take care of the old adults. Lastly, both the old adults and the community as a whole should get informed that online web sites receive regular updates thus will be of great help to them.

Implementation of the Program

The key players in this section will be primarily the elderly and the community as a whole. The old are expected to take the education given to them seriously and change their attitude and belief about cases that get related to falls. As part of the implementation process, they are expected to pay regular visits to health facilities to acquire knowledge on how to handle their conditions continuously. The older adults who prefer home-based exercise equally gets expected to fit their houses with training resources including a training instructor to maintain their fitness and live as required. Those with behavioral factors like alcohol addicts are also expected to refrain from the habit and stay healthily. 

On the hand, the community gets expected to act as the overseer of everything since the individuals in question form part of them. They get projected to ensure a universal fitness center where those older individuals with financial constraint may acquire training. Notably, they are expected to remind them of the program and its stipulations on a weekly basis. The mentioned will ensure that the statistics that got presented by the United States of America by between 2002 and 2010 get reduced with at least 70 percent by 2017 (Winters-Stone et al., 2012).  As part of ensuring smooth implementation procedure, there will be a created relationship between the community members and the pioneers of the program. The depicted will allow the pioneers to make regular visits to the community as the program get passed to other communities to monitor their progress. A few individuals will equally get recruited from the community to assist in providing information on the progress made. 

Finally, the implementation of this program will also include its fidelity which will mainly ensure that the key elements which ensured that the prevention strategies or interventions went successfully are retained. The fidelity will equally allow a future review of the program and analyze whether its intent got matched when dealing with the community and the older adults. It should similarly get considered that the maintenance of fidelity ensures that the older adults are prevented from falls and attain their stability and balance (winters-Stone et al., 2012).

8) Conclusion

In summary, the wellness and prevention program on preventing falls among the elderly focuses on various issues which may lead to mitigation of the subject in discussion among the older adults. It first starts by mentioning the vitality of the program, the causes and associated risk factors and the prevention strategies or interventions. It also addresses the implementation of the program and stresses on the maintenance of fidelity at the implementation stage. Therefore, it gets vital to consider that the program developed will assist in ensuring the safety and wellness of the elderly. It will enable them to avoid both the fatal and non- fatal injuries and promote their independence. The program also educates the community on various roles and serves them with some obligations that will help the elderly and prevent them from falls.

 

9) References

Gillespie, L. D., Robertson, M. C., Gillespie, W. J., Sherrington, C., Gates, S., Clemson, L. M., & Lamb, S. E. (2012). Interventions for preventing falls in older people living in the community. Cochrane Database Syst Rev, 9(11).

Goodwin, V. A., Abbott, R. A., Whear, R., Bethel, A., Ukoumunne, O. C., Thompson-Coon, J., & Stein, K. (2014). Multiple component interventions for preventing falls and fall-related injuries among older people: systematic review and meta-analysis. BMC Geriatrics, 14(1), 15.

Gusi, N., Adsuar, J. C., Corzo, H., del Pozo-Cruz, B., Olivares, P. R., & Parraca, J. A. (2012). Balance training reduces the fear of falling and improves dynamic balance and isometric strength in institutionalized older people: a randomized trial. Journal of physiotherapy, 58(2), 97-104.

Lovarini, M., Clemson, L., & Dean, C. (2013). Sustainability of community-based fall prevention programs: a systematic review. Journal of safety research, 47, 9-17.

Mirelman, A., Rochester, L., Reelick, M., Nieuwhof, F., Pelosin, E., Abbruzzese, G. & Hausdorff, J. M. (2013). V-TIME: a treadmill training program augmented by virtual reality to decrease fall risk in older adults: study design of a randomized controlled trial. BMC Neurology, 13(1), 15.

Winters-Stone, K. M., Li, F., Horak, F., Luoh, S. W., Bennett, J. A., Nail, L., & Dieckmann, N. (2012). Comparison of tai chi vs. strength training for fall prevention among female cancer survivors: study protocol for the GET FIT trial. BMC Cancer, 12(1), 577.

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