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    Falls Prevention Awareness Week, September 18-24, 2011

    In recognition of the serious impact that falls have on the health of Marylanders, Governor O'Malley has proclaimed September 18-24 as Falls Prevention Awareness Week in Maryland.

    Falls are a major cause of injury for older adults in Maryland. In fact, studies show that one in three people age 65 and over fall each year. Maryland data for the year 2009 shows that falls were the leading cause of emergency room visits for this age group and accounted for almost one quarter of the total emergency room visits for the year.

    For some people, falls result in serious injuries like hip fractures, which can mean long-term hospital or nursing home stays, or even death. Seniors who fall are two to three times more likely to fall again. Plus, seniors who fall once are likely to restrict their activity level for fear of falling again, which can reduce their quality of life.

    Most people think of falls as accidents, but the truth is most falls can be prevented. There are four major risk factors for falls in older adults: lack of exercise, vision problems, medication side effects, and home/environmental hazards. By taking simple steps in each of these areas, the risk of falls can be greatly reduced.

    This week, take the time to check your home, or the home of a senior parent, grandparent, or neighbor--for ways to make it safer. Learn all you can about falls prevention and make Maryland a safer place--one step at a time.

    Resources for Falls Prevention:

    Calendar of Falls Prevention Activities in Maryland

    Maryland Falls Fact Sheet

    Sample Falls Press Release for Maryland Jurisdictions

    Home Safe Home Checklist

    National Council on Aging Fall Prevention Awareness Activities

    CDC Falls Brochure

    CDC Falls Booklet

    Falls Resource List

    Safe Steps for Seniors Magnets--can be ordered by calling 410-767-8102

    Safe Steps for Seniors Magnet

     

     

     

     

    Environmental Health Bureau
    201 W. Preston Street, Room 327
    Baltimore Md 21201

    Toll-Free 1-866-703-3266