Effectiveness of a bed alarm system to predict falls in an acute care setting

Peggy Ward-Smith, Lynn Barrett, Kristal Rayson, Kourtney Govro


Aims and objectives: To evaluate the effectiveness that the inclusion of a software program has on the ability to prevent fallsamong inpatients in an acute care facility.

Background: Despite routine assessments and a myriad of interventions, inpatient falls occur at rates between 1.3 and 8.9 per1,000 patient days. The software used at the study site has the ability to correlate time, patient activity, and unit activity prior toa fall event.

Design: A retrospective chart review.

Methods: Medical record of 31 randomly selected patients, who experienced a fall while receiving inpatient care at the studysite, were reviewed. Demographic, health specific, and activity data were captured. Descriptive and correlational analyses wereused to determine if the software program was effective.

Results: The software program, when used in additional to routine assessments, identified a higher-than-normal interruptionsfor the care provider correlated with a fall. Patients who are prescribed antidepressants constitute a newly identified at-riskpopulation.

Conclusions: Interventions aimed at preventing falls among inpatients need to be multi-faceted, and any assessment needs tobe tailored to the specific health and demographic variables of the population.

Relevance to clinical practice: Implementation of the software program used at this study site would assist, but not prevent,falls among inpatients, specifically those identified as high-risk.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/cns.v3n1p1


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Clinical Nursing Studies
ISSN 2324-7940(Print)   ISSN 2324-7959(Online)

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