Prevention of falls in the community

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.c2244 (Published 11 May 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c2244
  1. Lindy Clemson, associate professor in ageing
  1. 1Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Sydney, Cumberland Campus, PO Box 170, Lidcombe, NSW 1825, Australia
  1. lindy.clemson{at}sydney.edu.au

    Is successful in trial settings, but translation into practice remains a challenge

    There is strong evidence for interventions to reduce the risk of falling in older age, but the uptake in practice has been remarkably slow and inconsistent.1 Recent meta-analyses and reviews of cost effectiveness show that the best investment for prevention is exercise of high dosage, which includes highly challenging balance training2; home safety for high risk groups3; and, on the basis of one trial, drug risk assessment and drug reviews.4 Better evidence is needed on how to package and deliver the different components of the interventions, in a way that is appropriate for different environments and health systems.1

    In the linked randomised trial (doi:10.1136/bmj.c2102), Logan and colleagues assess whether a community falls prevention service can reduce falls in older people.5 They found that a multifaceted falls prevention programme significantly reduced the rate of falls over 12 months (rate ratio 0.45, 95% confidence interval 0.35 to 0.58) in people who call an emergency ambulance after a fall …

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