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ance of nurses; where hospital personnel do not set the bed-exit alarm and the cases where a patient is under the influence of high-risk medication (Oliver, Healey, & Haines, 2010). Other situations that could lead to patient falls include where patient assessment is inadequate and where there are delays in responding to call alerts or care delivery.
More than 1 million patient falls occur every year. Among US hospitals, falls rates range between 3.1 and 11.5 cases/1,000 patient-days (Quigley et al., 2009). Rates of patient falls differ, depending on the type of hospital unit; the highest rates of falls are reported in the medical and the neuroscience units. Fall rates are 3.48 and 6.12/ 1000 and 6.12 and 8.83/1000 respectively (Quigley et al., 2009). About 30 percent of the total number of patient fall cases cause some form of injury; 10 percent cause the patients serious injury, including the fracture or the trauma of the head. Among aged patients, these falls are extremely dangerous, including that they can cause death or further illness (Oliver, Healey, & Haines, 2010).
The statistics reporting the incidence of patient falls and their effects among older patients are very critical and disturbing. Presently, older people of 75 years and above comprise about 22 percent of the patients admitted into hospitals (Wier, Pluntner, & Steiner, 2010). Further, major areas of hospital costs are related to patient falls: these include liability, length-of-stay and care services. The patients that suffered serious injuries, due to falls, while under the care of hospitals remained under care for 6.3 to 12 days more than their counterparts, and also registered higher healthcare costs by an average of USD 13,316 (Brand & Sundarajan, 2010). Additionally, starting 2008 the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services revised their policies – directing that they will not compensate hospitals for the costs incurred on the treatment of these types of injuries (Inouye, Brown, &
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