March 31, 2011

Initiative supports fall prevention research efforts

Initiative supports fall prevention research efforts

Vanderbilt University Medical Center has received a grant from the Picker Institute to enhance fall prevention efforts.

VUMC is one of 20 institutions around the country awarded a grant from the “Always Events/Always Experiences” initiative, which provides matching funds in support of innovative approaches to creating specific “Always Events” — the aspects of care that should always occur — that achieve measurable improvements in patient- and family-centered care.

The VUMC project, titled “Effective Communication and Collaboration with Patients and Families for Falls Prevention,” will provide information and education to facilitate autonomy, self-care and health promotion, and show patients and families how they can partner with the health care team to prevent a fall during a hospital stay.

All adult units will receive the falls prevention information currently in use, with the exception of two pilot units that will receive additional falls prevention info in the form of a video that is available in English, Spanish, Arabic, Kurdish and Somali.

The study will evaluate if adding patient and family engagement strategies delivered on multi-linguistic, automated platforms reduces falls in hospitalized patients.

“We are honored to be awarded one of the Picker Institute grants and look forward to collaborating with the Vanderbilt University Hospital Falls Prevention Committee and the VUH Patient and Family Advisory Council on this important initiative,” said Terrell Smith, M.S.N., R.N., director of Patient and Family Centered Care at VUMC and principal investigator.

Picker Institute is an independent, nonprofit organization dedicated to the advancement of the principles of patient-centered care.

“When we introduced Always Events/Always Experiences about a year ago, it drew a very enthusiastic response,” said Lucile O. Hanscom, executive director of the Picker Institute.

“We have been very gratified to see support for this innovative program gathering strength and positive feedback at all levels of the health care industry. We look forward to working with the great team at Vanderbilt University Medical Center to make Always Events/Always Experiences a vital part of the medical vocabulary and the health care industry.”