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The Be Well Podcast: Falls Prevention - Paul Ross, BSN, RN

Nov 8, 2022, 12:28 PM
Paul Ross, BSN, RN, Trauma Program Manager at Skagit Regional Health discusses fall prevention, who is most at risk for falling, the long term effects of a fall and more.

Listen in or read from the partial transcript below as Paul Ross, BSN, RN, Trauma Program Manager at Skagit Regional Health discusses fall prevention, who is most at risk for falling, the long term effects of a fall and more. 

Joey Wahler (Host): Taking a fall can cause serious injury, but the risks can be reduced. So we're discussing fall prevention. This is Be Well with Skagit Regional Health. Thanks for listening. I'm Joey Wahler. Our guest, Paul Ross, Trauma Program Manager for Skagit Regional Health. And Paul, thanks for joining us.

Paul Ross: Thank you for having me.

Joey Wahler (Host): So, first, what makes you so passionate about the subject of fall prevention?

Senior Day in the Park - Paul RossPaul Ross: Well, the passion comes that it's 65% of all of our traumas at Skagit Regional Health, and reducing those risks to our population.

Joey Wahler (Host): When we talk about it being preventable, what are some things that people should keep in mind there?

Paul Ross: There's multiple levels of prevention that can be provided: regular doctor's visits yearly, have your fall assessment completed by your provider, medication adjustments, hearing and eyesight correction, regular exercise routines and having your house evaluated for clutter, such as loose rugs, extension cords and then just making sure that everything is within reach.

Joey Wahler (Host): Interesting. Well, one of those you mentioned stands out to me, getting your eyesight checked. Do people tend to let that fall by the wayside more than maybe some other health checkups?

Paul Ross: They do because part of it's insurance-related. A lot of eyesight type appointments are not covered under some insurances such as Medicare to the full degree and it may be a price to the patient.

Joey Wahler (Host): So before we go any further in terms of age and whatever other factors there may be, who's most at risk of falling?

Paul Ross: So the people that are most at risk of falling are those that are 65 and older; poor nutrition; poor conditioning, such as getting enough exercise and keeping your muscles conditioned; people that are on multiple medications; people that use assistive devices such as canes, walkers, crutches; and, again, to mention the poor eyesight and hearing-type issues; and then, anybody that has balance issues especially after postoperative procedures such as any kind of amputations you may have from diabetes.

Joey Wahler (Host): Well, you mentioned there canes, walkers and crutches. When people need those, be it temporarily or permanently, how big an obstacle for people in the medical field is getting some people to agree to use them in the first place, because especially as people get older, sometimes that can be an issue, right?

Paul Ross: Correct. And I think it's just a big challenge of recognition that we all are getting older. And many people don't want to admit that their capabilities aren't what they were many years ago. And so using these devices in their regular household isn't always the safest bet when you're going through doorways, thresholds, hallways, trying to get in and out of your bathroom with walkers, some of their houses just aren't quite built for that kind of assistive devices.


To listen to the podcast or read the full transcript, visit here. 

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Last post : 12/02/2022

The Be Well Podcast: Falls Prevention - Paul Ross, BSN, RN

Nov 8, 2022, 12:28 PM
Paul Ross, BSN, RN, Trauma Program Manager at Skagit Regional Health discusses fall prevention, who is most at risk for falling, the long term effects of a fall and more.

Listen in or read from the partial transcript below as Paul Ross, BSN, RN, Trauma Program Manager at Skagit Regional Health discusses fall prevention, who is most at risk for falling, the long term effects of a fall and more. 

Joey Wahler (Host): Taking a fall can cause serious injury, but the risks can be reduced. So we're discussing fall prevention. This is Be Well with Skagit Regional Health. Thanks for listening. I'm Joey Wahler. Our guest, Paul Ross, Trauma Program Manager for Skagit Regional Health. And Paul, thanks for joining us.

Paul Ross: Thank you for having me.

Joey Wahler (Host): So, first, what makes you so passionate about the subject of fall prevention?

Senior Day in the Park - Paul RossPaul Ross: Well, the passion comes that it's 65% of all of our traumas at Skagit Regional Health, and reducing those risks to our population.

Joey Wahler (Host): When we talk about it being preventable, what are some things that people should keep in mind there?

Paul Ross: There's multiple levels of prevention that can be provided: regular doctor's visits yearly, have your fall assessment completed by your provider, medication adjustments, hearing and eyesight correction, regular exercise routines and having your house evaluated for clutter, such as loose rugs, extension cords and then just making sure that everything is within reach.

Joey Wahler (Host): Interesting. Well, one of those you mentioned stands out to me, getting your eyesight checked. Do people tend to let that fall by the wayside more than maybe some other health checkups?

Paul Ross: They do because part of it's insurance-related. A lot of eyesight type appointments are not covered under some insurances such as Medicare to the full degree and it may be a price to the patient.

Joey Wahler (Host): So before we go any further in terms of age and whatever other factors there may be, who's most at risk of falling?

Paul Ross: So the people that are most at risk of falling are those that are 65 and older; poor nutrition; poor conditioning, such as getting enough exercise and keeping your muscles conditioned; people that are on multiple medications; people that use assistive devices such as canes, walkers, crutches; and, again, to mention the poor eyesight and hearing-type issues; and then, anybody that has balance issues especially after postoperative procedures such as any kind of amputations you may have from diabetes.

Joey Wahler (Host): Well, you mentioned there canes, walkers and crutches. When people need those, be it temporarily or permanently, how big an obstacle for people in the medical field is getting some people to agree to use them in the first place, because especially as people get older, sometimes that can be an issue, right?

Paul Ross: Correct. And I think it's just a big challenge of recognition that we all are getting older. And many people don't want to admit that their capabilities aren't what they were many years ago. And so using these devices in their regular household isn't always the safest bet when you're going through doorways, thresholds, hallways, trying to get in and out of your bathroom with walkers, some of their houses just aren't quite built for that kind of assistive devices.


To listen to the podcast or read the full transcript, visit here.