About

The Falls Prevention Home and Community Safety Online Workshop is designed to train occupational therapists and other health care providers to conduct a comprehensive home visit to reduce the risk of falls for older community-residing adults. Working together with the older person, the goal is to identify environmental hazards and behavioural risks, to raise awareness of risks and to jointly problem-solve solutions. Six modules provide all the tools and the clinical reasoning underpinning the intervention and include case studies to practice and apply the approach learnt.

The Falls Prevention Home and Community Safety Online Workshop has been developed by Professor Lindy Clemson.  Lindy has been conducting this face-to-face workshop for over 20 years.  It is now available online.

The 6 modules covered in the course

Understanding the person and risk

Module 1 What is the evidence

Module 2 Profiling personal risk

Moving through the home environment and collaborative problem solving

Module 3 Foundations for clinical reasoning

Module 4 Techniques and tools

Prioritising and Planning

Module 5 Lifestyle checks (focusing on optional complimentary fall prevention resources)

Module 6 Action plan for change

You can dip in and out of the modules in your own time, and return as often as you like.  Try using it as a group activity.  Module 6 in particular would be great to do as a small group or in-service activity.

As a result of this workshop you will:

  1. Understand the evidence supporting environmental approaches to fall reduction.
  2. Be familiar with the Westmead approach which is an evidence-based fall reduction intervention focussing on home environmental safety.  This is an approach that you can use within your everyday practice.
  3. Be able to use validated assessment tools and engage the older person jointly in the decision-making process to establish priorities and solutions.
  4. Have an overview of the Westmead schema of how to assess and intervene in fall reduction on a home visit. Three overlapping phases include:
  • Understanding the person and profiling their risk,
  • Moving through the home environment and collaborative problem solving for risk reduction, and,
  • Prioritising and planning.
  1. Validate or enhance your current practice by understanding the foundations for clinical reasoning within each of these three phases
  2. Be able to apply specific techniques and tools to use on the home visit. Examples of key elements include awareness raising, problem solving and habit reforming. Techniques include establishing fall beliefs and intent, identifying environmental and behavioural fall hazards, environmental adaptation, up-to-date knowledge of solutions and access to options and products, and how to use situational cues and target the behaviour for change.
  3. Learn to develop a tailored Action Plan for your client. Through a series of case studies apply the approach to people with different risk factors and profiles.
  4. And finally, to consider how to apply this approach in your everyday practice.

Earning professional education points                      

A certificate is available to download following course completion. This is designed to support Continuing Professional Development requirements (e.g., CPD (Australia, Canada, Britain), PDU (US)).  There is also a check list, if needed, to demonstrate completed activities throughout the modules. Contact time is estimated at 3 hours.

Assessment tools

The Westmead Home Safety Assessment (long and short forms) and the Falls Behavioural Scale are freely available for download multiple times.  See the resources tab on the main menu to access these downloads.

Author

Lindy Clemson,

Professor in Ageing & Occupational Therapy, The University of Sydney

PhD, MAppSC (research) (OT), BAppSc (OT)

Biographical details

Professor Lindy Clemson is a specialist in public health research on ageing and an occupational therapist with a PhD in epidemiology. She leads the Participation, Safety and Ageing Research Team, investigating ways to improve the independence and quality of life of older people and to prevent falls.

Her specific focus areas are the physical environment, functional capacity and adaptation, daily life activity, enabling participation and preventing falls with older people. She has conducted randomised trials in the area of falls prevention with NHMRC project grant funding, including the successful “Stepping On” falls prevention program. She has contributed to the validation and development of functional assessments for older people related to ageing in place, and more recently conducted implementation research exploring issues of sustainability of fall prevention initiatives. Her falls prevention intervention “Stepping On” has attracted US CDC funding with collaborators at the University of Madison, Wisconsin to investigate its development for the US context. Read Lindy Clemson’s full bio here…