Strategies to promote fall prevention programs to community-dwelling older adults

Published on September 21, 2023 – In order to decrease fall rates among community-dwelling older adults, local healthcare professionals often organize fall prevention programs. Still, the uptake of these programs is often low. This study shows: reframing ‘aging’ and ‘fall prevention’ may help promote fall prevention programs.  

Read more: Strategies to promote fall prevention programs to community-dwelling older adults

In the article by Meike van Scherpenseel, Lidia van Veenendaal, Lennie Donné, Saskia te Velde, and Amber Ronteltap from the FRIEND (Fall pRevention ImplEmentatioN stuDy) project, 6 strategies were investigated in order to promote fall prevention programs to the target group: (1) reframing; (2) informing about benefits; (3) raising awareness of risks; (4) involving social environment; (5) offering tailored intervention, and (6) arranging practicalities. These strategies were identified in previous studies, using an Intervention Mapping approach (including a literature study and interviews with the target group and with healthcare professionals), as potentially effective.

In the current study, these 6 strategies were presented in 1-on-1 phone interviews to 12 community-dwelling older adults with an increased risk of falling. The researchers looked at whether and how these strategies would motivate the target group (both the participants themselves and their peers) to participate in fall prevention programs. Aside from reframing terminology regarding these programs, participants also thought it was important to emphasize the benefits of fall prevention for everyone (a ‘life-course approach’), and to integrate the programs into their own existing social environment. The message to healthcare professionals that want to increase the reach of their fall prevention efforts: it may work to use a positive, inclusive approach!

The whole article can be found here.

This study is part of the FRIEND-project, that is being conducted within several institutions in the area of Utrecht, such as the Research group Innovation of Movement Care of the HU University of Applied Science. The project is partly funded by SIA (part of the Dutch Research Council (NWO), project number RAAK.PRO03.099).