Critical Incident: Falls Among Elderly Patients over 70 years old
The health care system has, most recently, grappled with a sudden soaring in the number of falls amongst hospitalized patients. Even more worrying is the fact that elderly persons 70 years constitute the largest number in all recorded cases. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), these incidences pose a major health concern, with the United States leading in the number of per capita falls (World Health Organization, 2017). Two out of every five adverse events occurring at a hospital involve falls by patients, a frequency that has been on steady rise in the past five years. A major basis of concern is the event’s ability to exacerbate any prevailing condition that a senior citizen might have been hospitalized for. Any pre-existing health condition is severely aggravated, resulting in trauma that can result in a patient’s demise. Moreover, they may also result in fractures and clinical worsening which would ultimately be responsible for lengthening the recovery period while incurring additional cost for their continued hospitalization. The United States, for instance, records 19 million dollars as the amount of money spent annually by elderly persons pursuant to their fall treatment (Tideiksaar, 2010, p. 65). Emotional changes are also likely to take place in such in persons since their quality of life is greatly affected by such events. Some may begin to view themselves as a burden to their families and caregivers, slipping into a state of perpetual depression. Furthermore, their functional capacity is greatly reduced making it increasingly difficult for them to perform their day to day activities with ease. Identifying risk factors and other causative agents is therefore vital for healthcare professionals since risk factors can be pointed out succinctly, allowing the elderly to receive treatment without existential worries. A bow-tie analysis of this incident, therefore, aids in the generation of qualitative and quantitative approaches to curb its prevalence.
Bow-Tie Analysis of Falls Among Elderly Patients over 70 years old