Effectiveness of a Fall Prevention Educational Program for Long-Term Care Nursing Staff

Abstract

The goal of the research study was to evaluate the impact of an educational intervention on falls in a long-term care facility by (a) measuring staff knowledge of fall prevention, (b) behavioral assessment of fall prevention approaches, and (c) evaluation of fall rates and fall injury rates. The study used convenience sampling of nursing staff members, which included nursing assistants and medication aides. A Single-Group-Repeated Measures study design was used to evaluate knowledge and use of fall prevention strategies. The nursing staff members received face-to-face educational sessions on fall prevention using AHRQ guidelines on universal fall precautions. Pre-test, one month post-intervention, and three months post-intervention questionnaires were administered to assess knowledge and behavior. Data on fall rates, fall injury rates, severity of injuries, and repeated falls were collected at three months pre-intervention and throughout the three-month post-intervention period. The Friedman test was used to analyze the Fall Prevention Knowledge test scores and showed a statistically significant difference between the Fall Prevention Knowledge test scores on fall prevention approach (FPT) scores across the three time points. The Wilcoxon signed rank and sign test were used to analyze the Behavior Assessment subscale scores across two time points and showed no statistically significant difference across time points. The Pearson correlation was used to determine the relationship between knowledge and behavioral change scores before time 1 and after time 2 and time 3. At one-month and three-month post educational intervention, there were significant positive correlations between knowledge and behavioral assessment scores associated with several dependent variables. This indicated a likely relationship between knowledge and behavior in the study. At three-month post-intervention, fall rates in the healthcare living setting decreased and there were no major injuries reported. Implications for nursing relate to a need to stimulate interest in learning by staff, the importance of including all care providers in fall prevention efforts, and improvement of retention and recruitment strategies by long-term care facilities. Interest in learning may be improved through the use of incentives, time-off for education, mandatory educational training, tuition reimbursement, and an increase in hourly wag

Description
Keywords
falls, repeat falls, Minor falls, Major falls
Citation