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Injuries from Falls and Immobility

Falls resulting in injury are a prevalent patient safety problem.

Every year in the United States, hundreds of thousands of patients fall in hospitals with 30 percent to 50 percent resulting in injury according to The Joint Commission. These injured patients require additional treatment which, on average, can add 6.3 days and approximately $14,000 to a hospital stay.

Elderly patients with fall risk factors are not the only patients who are vulnerable to falling. Any patient of any age or physical ability can be at risk for a fall due to physiological changes related to a medical condition, medications, or a procedure. These factors make fall prevention difficult and complex.


Successful strategies have been developed to reduce and prevent falls. One strategy includes the use of standardized assessment tools to identify fall and injury risk factors, which may be used to determine interventions for prevention. Systematic reporting and analysis of fall events also are important components of a fall prevention program.

The HAP-HIIN Falls Project has developed a toolkit and assembled resources to assist hospitals in achieving a significant and sustainable reduction in their fall rate. As a result of this collaborative approach, HIIN-wide falls with injury rates calculated for years 1 and 2 of the HIIN Falls Project indicated that HIIN-participating hospitals experienced an 11 percent improvement over the baseline rate during year 1 and a 6 percent improvement over the baseline rate during year 2 of the project.

2019 Plans

During 2019, the HIIN has continued facility-driven information sharing and webinar presentations from nationally recognized experts, with a focus on:

  • Sustaining the gain
  • Identifying current best practices and implementation
  • Analyzing fall event data 
  • Identifying the most successful fall prevention strategies
  • Addressing myths that prevent the development of proactive fall prevention programs

HAP Contacts

For more information, contact Rick Kundravi and Susan Wallace. For media inquiries, contact Rachel Moore, director, media relations.

HAP News

January 15, 2020

Federal Attention Building to Address Social Determinants of Health

Urgency is building in Washington, DC, to advance policy to improve coordination in addressing social determinants of health, recognizing that factors such as stable housing, reliable transportation, and access to healthy foods have a direct impact on health and wellness.

January 09, 2020

WHO Designates 2020 as International Year of the Nurse and Midwife

The World Health Assembly, the governing body of the World Health Organization (WHO), has designated 2020 as International Year of the Nurse and Midwife. The celebration coincides with the 200 birthday of Florence Nightingale. It serves to raise awareness of the nursing profession and the essential role of nurses and midwives, past and present, in health care delivery across the globe.