The author has chosen falls as the safety area that they would like to research more than the other options. They are prominent and dangerous, generally occurring in areas where medical workers have no opportunity for quick interventions. Moreover, the damage from a fall can be severe, and they are a prominent cause of injuries that require emergency treatment. The author believes that this trait makes them the most critical aspect on the list, as it concerns a preventable and widespread problem that directly affects patient health. There are many ways to address falls, which are used in different locations both alone and in combinations with corresponding variations in success. As such, they believe that continuous research and development are necessary to achieve the best patient outcomes.
- P– (patient population/patients of interest): Adults who are 65 or more
- I– (Intervention): Multifactorial interventions that include telemedicine education
- C– (Comparison): Traditional interventions
- O– (Measurable outcome): The number of falls that result in injuries
- T– (Time frame in months): Three months
Evidence Retrieval Process and Summary
Hamm’s study highlights the passive nature of most fall prevention interventions, which do not involve a user interaction aspect. The interaction between patients and care providers is lacking, which may contribute to the incidence of falls. The authors formulate a conceptual model for fall prevention that consists of four different stages and discuss the usage of electronic devices. They recommend the adoption of new technologies by clinicians to conduct home assessments and educate patients efficiently.
Cheng’s study reviews and compares the results of various fall prevention measures that are used worldwide. The authors examine education, risk assessment and suggestions, exercise, medical care, hazard assessment and modification, the combination of education and RAS, education and exercise, RAS and exercise, exercise and HAM, and multifactorial interventions. It finds that the last category, which involves a combination of three or more different measures, is the most effective.
Jhaveri’s study proposes telemedicine usage for fall prevention, which involves regular visual assessments and patient education. Potential advantages include the interception of problems through frequent visual interactions and improved efficiency through a reduction in travel time. With that said, the paper was published as a proposal for research and does not include the results of the experiment. Regardless, the formulation of the intervention can be useful when considering intervention designs.
The evidence suggests that the interventions that are currently used may not be adequate for their purpose. There is a variety of different options that should be combined, if possible, to achieve improved patient outcomes. Doing so can be costly, as the additional measures require a considerable amount of time, money, and effort. However, the usage of telemedicine may significantly improve patient outcomes through regular interaction with medical workers as well as education. Moreover, the costs of doing so may not be as high as those of physical visits. However, the studies that have been conducted on the topic are lacking in number, as the concept is still somewhat new. As such, the committee should research the application of telemedicine to falls to determine whether it is a viable option.
Hamm, J., Money, A. G., Atwal, A., & Paraskevopoulos, I. (2016). Fall prevention intervention technologies: A conceptual framework and survey of the state of the art. Journal of Biomedical Informatics, 59, 319-345.
Cheng, P., Tan, L., Ning, P., Li, L., Gao, Y., Wu, Y., Schwebel, D. C., Chu, H., Yin, H., & Hu, G. (2018). Comparative effectiveness of published interventions for elderly fall prevention: A systematic review and network meta-analysis. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 15(3).
Jhaveri, M. M., Benjamin-Garner, R., Rianon, N., Sherer, M., Francisco, G., Vahidy, F., Kobayashi, K., Gaber, M., Shoemake, P., Vu, K., Trevino, A., Grotta, J., & Savitz, S. (2017). Telemedicine-guided education on secondary stroke and fall prevention following inpatient rehabilitation for Texas patients with stroke and their caregivers: A feasibility pilot study. BMJ Open, 7(9).