Emporia “Stepping On” fall prevention program begins

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Newman Regional Health in Emporia says, people falling is the number one trauma case they see in their emergency room. They say about 80 percent of trauma cases are related to people falling. Now, the hospital is working to educate people, to reduce these numbers.

“When we have these falls, the two biggest things (to worry about) are closed head injuries, which are really bad, and broken hips,” says Damien O’Keefe, the Emergency Department Director at Newman Regional Health. 

Bridget Camien, who teaches the Stepping On Program in Emporia says, “(People) typically become reliant on canes, and they don’t want to get out and do as much, and be as independent as they were before.”

In the Stepping On program, the hospital works with older patients to make their environments safer. 

“They actually do some strength training with them, (and) make them more aware of their surroundings and how they can best protect themselves,” O’Keefe explains.  

“Each week we have a different topic. One topic will be medications, one will be home hazards, (another) on community safety,” Camien says.  

Camien says the main advice the hospital has for people in danger of falling is to, “Stay active as long as you can, be aware of your surroundings, and really talk with your physician about the medications you’re taking and the risks.”

Statistics show, the program is making a difference by reducing the number of falls. 

“By using the Stepping On program it has been proved to reduce falls by 30 percent,” boasts Camien.  

The class starts this Thursday, April 4, at the hospital. The session lasts for two hours and is held one day per week, for 7 weeks.

Meetings are every Thursday from 1:00pm to 3:00pm.

04/04: Introduction to Program and Exercises

04/11: Moving about Safely

04/18: Advancing Exercises and Home Hazards

04/25: Vision & Falls, Community Safety and Footwear

05/02: Managing Medications, Bone Health, Sleep Better

05/09: Getting Out and About

05/16: Review and Plan Ahead

Sign up at Main Registration, just inside Entrance C at Newman Regional Health, or call (620) 343-6800 x1166 during normal business hours.

Find more information on the program at: https://www.newmanrh.org/stepping-on-emporia/

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