Falls among the elderly are common, and many times these falls happen within nursing homes and other health care facilities. Falls among the elderly are especially problematical for many reasons, one being that such falls often cause significant injury that can lead directly or indirectly to deaths.
Nursing home falls are discussed in this site in various places, including:
Additionally, various posts concerning instances of nursing home falls can be found in the “nursing home falls” category.
Recently, HealthDay (a National Institutes of Health publication) published a May 7, 2015 news release titled “Fall-Related Deaths Nearly Doubled For Seniors Since 2000.”
Notable excerpts include:
The number of American seniors who die from fall-related injuries has nearly doubled since 2000, a new report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveals.
The observation is based on an analysis of death rate information compiled by the National Vital Statistics System between 2000 and 2013. The report specifically noted that while roughly 30 seniors in every 100,000 died following a fall in 2000, that figure jumped to nearly 57 per 100,000 by 2013.
Gleason (who was not part of the CDC report team) said that there are multiple factors that might contribute to a person’s risk for falling, such as balance issues, poor nutrition, poorly controlled diabetes resulting in foot numbness, or poor coordination. Impaired thinking, she added, could also render familiar environments unfamiliar, raising the risk for tripping.
About one-third of Americans over 65 fall every year, according to the CDC. Emergency departments treat about 2.5 million fall-related injuries (or about one every 13 seconds) every year.
The risk of fall-related death also rose with age, according to the report. While the fall-related death rate among seniors aged 65 to 74 was pegged at 14 per 100,000 people, that figure was found to be 16 times higher among seniors 85 and up (226 per 100,000).
This news release also references the primary report, the May 6, 2015 CDC’s NCHS Data Brief titled “Deaths From Unintentional Injury Among Adults Aged 65 and Over: United States, 2000–2013.” (pdf)
This Data Brief report contains a variety of statistics, including the following:
- In 2012–2013, 55% of all unintentional injury deaths among adults aged 65 and over were due to falls.
The report also contains a variety of charts showing the increased incidence of all unintentional deaths for those over age 65 annually, since 2000; as well as other information such as demographic details.
In the “Summary,” it states the following:
Fatal falls among the older population may be increasing for many reasons. Some research suggests that at least a portion of this increase is due to improved reporting of falls (6).
Additional details and statistics regarding this falls among those ages 65 and over can be found in the references found above.
For a discussion regarding preventing falls in the elderly, please see the “Preventing Falls In Nursing Homes” page.
Should someone you care for in a Chicago nursing home, or any other Illinois nursing home or care facility, suffer a fall that leads to injury, they may be entitled to compensation. While, of course, not all falls are caused by carelessness or negligence on the part of the nursing home (or other long-term health care provider), in instances where a resident falls due to negligence a lawsuit may be warranted. Each nursing home fall that leads to injury should be assessed, from a legal perspective, on a case-specific basis. Please call the Chicago personal injury trial lawyers at the Elman Joseph Law Group at (773) 392-8182 to discuss the fall accident and to get a free legal overview concerning the accident injury.