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Trends in Nonfatal Falls and Fall-Related Injuries Among Adults Aged ≥65 Years - United States, 2012-2018.

Falls are the leading cause of injury among adults aged ≥65 years (older adults) in the United States. In 2018, an estimated 3 million emergency department visits, more than 950,000 hospitalizations or transfers to another facility (e.g., trauma center), and approximately 32,000 deaths resulted from fall-related injuries among older adults.* Deaths from falls are increasing, with the largest increases occurring among persons aged ≥85 years (1). To describe the percentages and rates of nonfatal falls by age group and demographic characteristics and trends in falls and fall-related injuries over time, data were analyzed from the 2018 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) and were compared with data from 2012, 2014, and 2016. In 2018, 27.5% of older adults reported falling at least once in the past year, and 10.2% reported an injury from a fall in the past year. The percentages of older adults reporting a fall increased between 2012 and 2016 and decreased slightly between 2016 and 2018. Falls are preventable, and health care providers can help their older patients reduce their risk for falls. Screening older patients for fall risk, assessing modifiable risk factors (e.g., use of psychoactive medications or poor gait and balance), and recommending interventions to reduce this risk (e.g., medication management or referral to physical therapy) can prevent older adult falls (https://www.cdc.gov/steadi).

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