Falls TIPS Tools Under Development

Introduction: The Fall TIPS Toolkit

The Fall TIPS Toolkit (FTTK) is a web-based program that integrates documentation and communication of fall risk assessment, creation of a tailored evidence-based plan into busy patient care workflows. The purpose of the FTTK is to help nurses and other bedside clinicians to communicate fall risk status and planned interventions and to make patient-specific alerts accessible to all care team members at the bedside (including patients and family members).

The foundation of the FTTK is a valid fall risk assessment scale completed by the nurse using the Morse Fall Scale (MFS).1  The FTTK software automatically tailors fall prevention interventions to address patient-specific determinants of risk that are identified through assessment using the MFS.  The evidence based interventions included in the FTTK  logic and associated icons were identified and validated by professional and paraprofessional care providers, patients and family members.2, 3  The FTTK aims to provide a workflow friendly solution that overcomes the usual silos associated with communication of fall risk status and feasible, evidence-based interventions to prevent patient falls. The outputs of the FTTK include the following:

  1. Bed poster composed of short text with accompanying icon(s)
  2. Patient education handout (English/Spanish)
  3. Plan of care

Fall TIPS Toolkit User InterfaceFall TIPS Toolkit Bed PosterFall TIPS Toolkit Patient Education Handout and Plan of Care

The FTTK outputs all communicate patient-specific alerts within the workflow of key stakeholders. Use of the FTTK in acute short stay hospitals is associated with a significant reduction in patient falls in patients over age 64.4

Next Steps: The Fall TIPS research team will use data mining techniques to refine the FTTK logic to improve effectiveness across age groups and types of patients. The refined FTTK will be tested for effectiveness for preventing falls and injurious falls in adult hospitalized patients of all ages.

References

  1. Morse JM. Preventing Patient Falls: Establishing a Fall Intervention Program Vol 2. New York: Springer; 2008.
  2. Carroll DL, Dykes PC, Hurley AC. Patients' perspectives of falling while in an acute care hospital and suggestions for prevention. Appl Nurs Res. Nov 2010;23(4):238-241.
  3. Dykes PC, Carroll DL, Hurley AC, Benoit A, Middleton B. Why do patients in acute care hospitals fall? Can falls be prevented? J Nurs Adm. Jun 2009;39(6):299-304.
  4. Dykes PC, Carroll DL, Hurley A, et al. Fall prevention in acute care hospitals: a randomized trial. JAMA. Nov 3 2010;304(17):1912-1918.

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