Objective: This paper will discuss how the geriatric psychiatry program of a large addiction and mental health facility in Toronto, Canada implemented a quality improvement initiative to reduce patient falls in its 35-bed inpatient service.
Design: A multidisciplinary program quality council was developed. This program council was also linked to the organization-wide quality council. A number of performance indicators requiring ongoing monitoring and measurement were identifed by program staff, among these, the number of falls per quarter on the geriatric psychiatry inpatient service. Links with the hospital's risk management office were also established to assist with performance measurement.
Materials and Methods: Subsequent to identifying their performance indicator, the group worked to develop a falls prevention strategy for implementation on the inpatient unit.
Results: Four months post-implemention, early results are favorably showing a reduction in falls.
Conclusion: The majority of patient falls on a psychogeriatric inpatient setting can be prevented. The benefits of developing a collaborative quality approach to falls prevention cannot be overstated. The authors believe others can learn from their experience with the development and implementation to strategies to prevent falls in their psychogeriatric population.
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