Falls are the leading cause of injury and death among those ages 65 and
older. In 2008, 2.1 million non-fatal fall injuries among older adults
were treated in emergency departments, resulting in more than 559,000
hospitalizations. Twenty to thirty percent of people who fall suffer moderate
to severe injuries such as laceration, hip fractures or head traumas.
Even if no injuries occur after a fall, many people develop a fear of
falling, which in turn often causes them to limit their activities. This
can result in reduced mobility and loss of physical conditioning, increasing
their risk of falling.
Stepping On is a program that empowers older adults to carry out healthy
behaviors that reduce the risks of falls. It is a community-based workshop
offered once a week for seven weeks using adult education and self-efficacy
principles. In a small-group setting, older adults learn balance exercises
and develop specific knowledge and skills to prevent falls. Workshops
are facilitated by two trained leaders. Guest speakers, including a physical
therapist, vision expert, community safety expert, pharmacist and past
participants, offer their expertise in falls prevention. The curriculum
is centered on balance-building exercises and strength- building exercises
and ways to keep people safe from falls in their homes and in the community.
Atlantic General Hospital has been offering the Stepping On Program in
the community since early 2012. The next course, offered at the Indian
River Senior Center in Millsboro, DE, will be on Fridays from September
26, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., through November 7. This is open to the public
and free to all. Registration is required. To register, or for more information,
call Dawn at 410-641-9268.
About Atlantic General Hospital
Atlantic General Hospital has been providing quality health care to the
residents of Worcester, Wicomico, Somerset (Md.) and Sussex (Del.) counties
since May 1993. Built by the commitment and generosity of a dedicated
community, the hospital’s state-of-the-art facility in Berlin, Md.,
combines old-fashioned personal attention with the latest in technology
and services. It provides quality specialty care such as weight loss surgery,
orthopedics, outpatient infusion for individuals with cancer or blood/autoimmune
disorders, retina surgery and a comprehensive women’s diagnostic
center. Atlantic General Health System, its network of more than 40 primary
care providers and specialists, care for residents and visitors throughout
the region. For more information about Atlantic General Hospital, visitwww.atlanticgeneral.org.