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Fall Prevention

Falls are the leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries in adults ages 65 and older. Such injuries may limit mobility, contribute to social isolation, and even cause premature death. The risk of falls and related injuries increases with age and is greatest after age 75.

The Healthy People 2020 goal is 4.7% or fewer adults ages 65 and older having falls that result in an emergency department visit [1]. Tennessee has not yet reached this goal, as approximately 7.3% of older Tennesseans had an emergency department visit due to a fall in 2015.

Fall Preventive Initiatives in Tennessee

Tennessee Falls Prevention Coalition 
TCAD hosts the Tennessee Falls Prevention Coalition. The Coalition has quarterly calls for anyone interested in falls prevention efforts across the state. Please contact Sidney Schuttrow at Sidney.Schuttrow@tn.gov to join the coalition and get fall prevention updates.

In support of National Fall Prevention Awareness Day on September 23, 2019, the Tennessee Fall Prevention Coalition is implementing a statewide media campaign "Falls Free Tennessee". This campaign will focus on highlighted three groups of people and who they prevent falls on a regular basis. These three groups are:

          Individual older adults
          Groups of older adults
          Partnerships that focus on fall prevention

We ask anyone wanting to participate in this campaign to complete the form below and submit a photo of the individual or group. The coalition will use the Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability Facebook page to start a "Falls Free Fridays" post using submissions. The more submissions we receive the more days of the week we can highlight fall prevention across Tennessee. Please submit the form below and photos to Sidney Schuttrow at Sidney.Schuttrow@tn.gov.

        Falls Free Friday Participant Form

  • Evidence-based programs
    TCAD administers Older Americans Act funding for evidence-based health promotion and disease prevention activities. Many of these are exercise classes aimed at preventing falls. Stay Active and Independent for Life (SAIL) is one such evidence-based fall prevention program.
  • National Fall Prevention Awareness Day
    TCAD participates in the annual Falls Prevention Awareness Day (FPAD) which raises awareness about how to prevent fall-related injuries among older adults.

Interested in learning more about fall prevention efforts in Tennessee? Email tn.aging@tn.gov for more information.

[1] United States Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, “Healthy People 2020 Topics & Objectives, Older Adults.”