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Older Adult Falls Prevention

Colorado is a state where older adults can live safe, healthy and independent lives. While falls are a threat to the health and independence of older adults and can significantly limit their ability to remain self-sufficient, the opportunity to reduce falls among older adults has never been better. Today, there are proven interventions that can reduce falls and help older adults live better, and longer.
Effective fall prevention is achieved through physician fall risk assessments, treatment, referral and follow up.  This process is outlined and supported by the STEADI Toolkit.   Referrals can be made to community exercise and education programs that are evidence-based such as Tai Chi: Moving for Better Balance and Stepping On.
Did you realize that one out of three people 65 and older falls each year?
The good news is that health care providers can help reduce their patients’ chances of falling and of suffering serious injuries like hip fractures and traumatic brain damage.  CDC’s Injury Center created the STEADI Tool Kit for health care providers who see older adults in their practice who are at risk of falling or who may have fallen in the past. The STEADI Tool Kit gives health care providers the information and tools they need to assess and address their older patients’ fall risk.

Important announcement for Colorado physicians!

The American Board of Internal Medicine has approved the CDC STEADI Fall Prevention Quality Improvement Program for Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Part IV credit.
Colorado Department of Public Health has resources to help you implement all aspects of STEADI, including provider education, print and electronic materials, data collection, and reporting requirements.  For more information contact Aerin LaCerte.
The STEADI toolkit is a comprehensive and easy-to-use resource designed to help healthcare providers incorporate fall risk assessment and proven interventions into their clinical practice.
The toolkit contains provider resources including:
  • Fact sheets
  • Training materials such as case studies
  • A chart to help different types of practices incorporate falls prevention
  • Suggestions about how to talk with patients about falls
  • Assessment tools for three gait and balance tests
  • Patient education brochure
  • Pocket guide for providers which includes a flowchart outlining the most important steps in assessing and managing fall risk in older patients.
Visit CDC’s website to view the STEADI Toolkit materials and other fall prevention related resources and data.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is coordinating the implementation of Tai Chi:Moving for Better Balance classes in Colorado.

Tai Chi: Moving for Better Balance (TCMBB) is an evidence-based falls prevention program for community-dwelling adults aged 60 and older. The program uses eight forms derived from the traditional 24-form Yang style of Tai Chi. All forms are arranged in a sequence from easy to more difficult, adapted to the needs of older adults. The low-impact movements emphasize weight shifting, postural alignment, and coordinated movements. TCMBB is a program of one-hour classes held two or three times a week for 12 weeks. The YMCA of USA offers the YMCA Moving for Better Balance 12-week program through many of the Colorado YMCAs. The YMCA MBB is based on Dr. Fuzhong Li’s Tai Chi Moving for Better Balance.

View the list of Upcoming Tai Chi Classes in your community.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is coordinating the implementation of Stepping On workshops in Colorado. The Workshops for older adults are led by training leaders from HealthONE and Centura hospitals and the Consortium for Older Adult Wellness.(COAW).

View the list of Upcoming Stepping On classes in your community.

Sallie Thoreson
Colroado Department of Public Health and Environment
Phone:  970-248-7161
Aerin LaCerte

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment

Phone: 303-692-2530