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How Often Do Patients Fall in the Hospital?

  Alan Fuchsberg  |  October 9, 2015  |  

Neglect in the hospital setting can lead to further injuries, increased recovery times, increased overall costs, and much more. One of the most common ways that people are injured in the hospital is through falls. In fact, there are reportedly over 1 million of these types of accidents each and every year. Patient falls in hospitals are a serious problem.

When looking at the rates for every 1,000 patient days, it’s often found that hospitals come in between 3.31 and 11.5. However, different units have different rates. Neuroscience is usually the highest, as the rate is between 6.12 and 8.83. After that comes the medical unit, with rates between 3.48 and 6.12.

Of course, not all falls lead to injuries, but studies have shown that a significant number do—usually in the range of 30 percent. Perhaps more troubling is that 10 percent of these instances lead to serious injuries. These include things like bone fractures, head and skull injuries, and traumatic brain injuries.

Preventing Harm from Patient Falls in Hospitals

One way to combat this is to identify high-risk patients and to provide them with equipment that may be able to help. For example, the risks to the elderly are naturally higher, as limited mobility and aging may both make them more likely to fall and mean that injuries can be direr if they do.

Hospitals can then give what are known as “low beds” to these high-risk individuals. As the name implies, low beds are simply far closer to the floor, just a few inches up, and they also usually come with many guard rails and safety devices.

If you or a loved one was injured by an accidental fall in the hospital, you have the right to find out what type of compensation may be available in New York. We invite you to contact our law office to learn about your rights and options.

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