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Slips, trips and falls

Slips, trips and falls
Reference number
0483
Issue date01 January 2007
TypeData report

This Patient Safety Observatory report aims to improve understanding of the scale and impact of slips, trips and falls within the NHS, and to encourage staff at all levels to renew efforts to prevent these.

 

A patient falling is the most common patient safety incident reported to the National Reporting and Learning Service (NRLS) from inpatient services. Over 200,000 falls were reported to the  Reporting and Learning System (RLS) in the 12 months from September 2005 to August 2006, with reports of falls coming from 98 per cent of organisations that provide inpatient services.

 

The NRLS recommends that each patient at risk of falling should receive multifaceted clinical and environmental interventions that could reduce the risk. To achieve this, NHS organisations should:

 

  • Ensure that the circumstances of falls are properly described on local incident forms.
  • Analyse and use reports of falls to learn about contributing factors.
  • Create a falls prevention group to act on both clinical and environmental risk factors. 
  • Base falls prevention policies on the evidence described in this report.
  • If using a falls risk score, understand the degree to which it under- or over-predicts the chances of a patient falling. 
  • Have appropriate guidance for staff.

Slips, trips and falls in hospital report - Patient Safety Observatory
Slips, trips and falls in hospital report - Patient Safety Observatory - 1.30 MB 0483 - Slips, trips and falls in hospital report - Patient Safety Observatory - 2007 - V1
Slips, trips and falls in hospital summary - Patient Safety Observatory
Slips, trips and falls in hospital summary - Patient Safety Observatory - 385 KB 0483A - Slips, trips and falls in hospital summary - Patient Safety Observatory - 2007 - V1