Nurse’s Duty In Fall Prevention Especially In Patients Undergoing Hemodialysis

991 words - 4 pages

Nurse’s Duty in Fall Prevention especially in patients undergoing Hemodialysis
Falls can happen at any time and place in a hospital setting. It is a major patient safety issue causing injury, distress and even death. According to Debra Hain (2012), “In 2010, there were 2.35 million emergency room visits for non-fatal injuries in older adults with over 25% requiring hospitalization” (pg. 251). Falls can interrupt a person’s quality of life but also have a financial effect on the healthcare system (Hain, 2012). Falls are preventable and in order to reduce the rates for falls nurses must be more vigilant in their assessments to identify patients that are at risk, especially for those ...view middle of the document...

Modifiable factors are associated with the patient’s physiological circumstances which can include a patient’s pain level, dehydration, muscle weakness or functional limitations (Hain 2012). While non-modifiable risk factors cannot be manipulated, modifiable factors can be treated to decrease the risk for falls. Such as giving pain medication for a patient’s pain level, liquids for dehydration, physical therapy for muscle weakness, and assistive devices for functional limitations. An acronym called DAME is also used to categorize fall risks. Each letter represents an individual risk factor. D stands for drug and alcohol use, A stands for age-related physiological status and E stands for the environment (Hain, 2012). Just like SBAR, DAME is an effective way for nurses on the floor to remember and categorize patients who are more at risk than others. It takes into account the non-modifiable and modifiable risk factors. Yellow colored wristbands are also used in the healthcare setting to communicate to health care providers of a fall risk (Potter and Perry 2011).
Patient-centered interventions are critical to the prevention of falls. Some interventions that can reduce falls and fall risks are; making sure side rails are up, placing the bed in the lowest position possible to ensure patient safety, removing environmental hazards, and showing patients how to use the call light (Potter and Perry). Patients that will undergo hemodialysis will do a Timed Up and Go test. This test will score the patient on their mobility and functional independence. The patient is first asked to stand up from a chair, walk 3 meters in a line, turn, walk back to the chair, and sit back down. Depending on the time the patient completes the task a second time around will determine their fall risk score. 10 seconds or less is considered normal while a score of 14 seconds or more have shown to indicate a high risk for falls (Hain, 2012). Nurses should also maintain close supervision of confused patients and keep disoriented patients to a room near the nurses’ station to provide more frequent observation by the nursing staff...

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