Oak Trace Care & Rehab Center proves great things happen when the whole team works toward a common goal.

Poster from Oak Trace's "Fall Festival" illustrates the dramatic decrease in resident falls.

Poster from Oak Trace’s “Fall Festival” illustrates the dramatic decrease in resident falls.

The staff of the Bessemer skilled nursing care center began a focused campaign to reduce resident falls after the center experienced an all-time high of 24 falls in July 2015. All departments came together to develop and implement a process improvement plan. The group analyzed when and where falls were occurring and studied what to do differently. A certified nursing assistant discovered most the falls were occurring during a specific timeframe each day. Department heads immediately adjusted staff duties during that timeframe and it jumpstarted the “Fall Prevention” program.

Next, Oak Trace set monthly and quarterly goals for fall reduction. Leaders used several methods to teach staff members how to prevent residents from falling, educated them on the goals of the program and set accountability measures. In the first month, August 2015, falls decreased almost 50%. By September 2016, the number of falls decreased 75% to only six per month.

Oak Trace credits the results to the entire nursing home staff buying in to the effort to reduce falls. All departments, not just nursing, have specific tasks to help reduce resident falls. All staff members take part in various in-services and other education offerings. The center held a “Fall Festival” to focus on preventing falls. Each department created a booth centered on an education lesson. The Halloween themed event created a fun atmosphere because nursing home residents could trick-or-treat while staff members toured the booths to learn from their peers.

Oak Trace’s “Fall Prevention” program is so successful that the Alabama Quality Assurance Foundation and the Atom Alliance featured it in a quality improvement webinar.

Oak Trace Care & Rehab Center will present “Fall Prevention” at Alabama’s Best Practices February 13 in Birmingham.

Click here for detailed information on how to implement Oak Trace Care & Rehab Center’s best practice in your nursing home.