Falls prevention week
18th-22nd September 2023 is falls prevention awareness week and the theme is ‘moving from awareness to action”.
Every year more than 3 million people aged 65 years and over fall at least once.
Falls and related injuries have become increasingly common among older adults. In 2019-20, there were 10,810 emergency hospital admissions across Greater Manchester attributed to falls among individuals aged 65 and over.
Everyone has a role to play in raising awareness of falls in the community and health and care locations.
Find out more here how to prevent falls for you and your friends and family:
We have may projects and services across Greater Manchester to help prevent falls. Find out more about some of the key projects below.
Sarah Hardman, Home Safety Development Officer for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service
“As a service, we recognise the importance of raising awareness of falls and the significant risk falls pose for older people across Greater Manchester.
As part of our Home Fire Safety Assessments, we evaluate residents’ mobility and if necessary, signpost them to partner agencies for prevention support.
Falls and fire risk are intrinsically linked. Both an individual’s ability to escape and chances of accidentally starting a fire are impacted by their susceptibility to falls. That is why we’re committed to helping at-risk individuals receive the guidance and support they need.”
Nichola Thompson, Ageing Well Lead for NHS Greater Manchester.
“Every year many people have falls at home. These falls can lead to trips to the emergency department and serious injuries.
Keep on Keep up (KOKU) is a simple, NHS-approved app that helps older adults improve strength, balance, and optimise healthy ageing. KOKU is an exercise intervention app designed to help prevent falls in older people. It focuses on strength and balance.
This Falls Prevention Week we are encouraging people to sign up. We know that strength and balance programmes are the single most effective falls prevention intervention, and we want to give everyone the opportunity to access the KOKU programme.”
John, participant of Wigan Council’s Be Well programme.
“I enjoy it (the strength and balance classes) a lot. I enjoy the variations for people of all abilities.
I’m nowhere near where I used to be (since the falls), but the class allows me to attempt to build back to where I once was.
The instructors are fully supportive and provide great variation in the way the class operates. Similar exercises taught in different ways can make the class more engaging and can only benefit us participants.”
Professor Martin Vernon, Consultant Geriatrician and Clinical Advisor
Some of us are much ore at risk of sustaining a serious fall than others – in particular older people living with frailty or complex needs, those living alone, and those with long term health conditions.
Being ready for winter weather can make a difference. Preparing your home to make it as safe and free from trip hazards as possible, taking good care of yourself, family and neighbours.
To avoid slips, trips and falls, keep physically active where you can, seek advice early if needed, and wear good-fitting footwear with good grip both indoors and outdoors.”