Those who agree to participate will be assigned to one of two groups. One group will be the control group. The control group will have an initial Falls Efficacy Scale (FES) and Vulnerable Elders Survey (VES) screening completed in the ED along with two tests of their ability to move. The two tests are: the “TUG” (Timed Up and Go) test and the “Chair 30-Second Stand” test. The “TUG” test measures how long it takes a person to get up and out of a chair, walk ten feet, turn around, walk back and sit down again. The “Chair 30-Second Stand” test measures how many times a person can stand up from a chair in 30 seconds. The study investigator will advise the participant on how to take action to prevent falls. Participants in the control group will be given the brochure “What YOU Can Do to Prevent Falls.” The other group will be the intervention group. Those in the intervention group will have an initial Falls Efficacy Scale (FES) and Vulnerable Elders Survey (VES) screening completed in the ED. Participants in the intervention group will also be given the “TUG” and “Chair 30-Second Stand” tests, and their risk of falling will be evaluated using a study worksheet (the “bedside decision form”). In addition, a study team member will explain what the participant can do to decrease their risk of falling. Participants in the intervention group will have the opportunity to discuss what mobility goals are most important to them, and choose the management options form the list provided that are the most valuable. The study team will help the participant arrange the treatment options they agree to. Participants in the “intervention” group will keep the original copy of their decision form with their selected fall prevention treatment options. A copy will be placed in the participant’s study file. Participants in both groups will receive a telephone call approximately 6 weeks after their discharge from the ED to collect self-reported data about goal completion, and then at 4 additional times (3, 6, 9 and 12 months). There will be a total of 5 telephone calls lasting no more than 15 minutes each.
Inclusion Criteria-including but may not be limited to:
Must be 65 years of age or older
Must be discharged home from the ED
Must be able to speak English
Must have a mechanical fall risk as defined by one of the following: reported having fallen in the past year; reported worrying about falling; admitted they feel unsteady when standing or walking