VON Guelph Wellington News:
From Kelly Gee
"It takes a community to prevent a fall; we all have a role to play"
Falls are the leading cause of injury among older Canadians: one in three older adults experience a fall each year and falling once doubles ones chance of falling again. “Falls are the cause of 85 per cent of hospitalizations for Canadian seniors. The average Canadian senior stays in hospital 10 days longer for falls than for any other cause. The cost to treat injuries from falls is over $2 billion annually in direct healthcare costs” (Canadian Patient Safety Institute, 2019).
According to statistics, exercising for 50 hours can prevent a fall for older adults 65+. Based on this premise, in November 2018 the Safe Communities Falls Prevention Advisory Committee and VON worked together to launch our 50 class challenge for our SMART Exercise participants in Wellington County. We have been tracking our participant’s progress and rewarding prizes and certificates to any SMART participant that attends 50 classes from November 2018 – November 2019. Since last November, we have had over 250 older adults complete 50 classes, 20 people complete 100 classes and over 10 people complete 150 classes. If an older adult over the age of 65 falls once it doubles their chance of falling again so just imagine how many falls we have prevented in Wellington County this past year.
In support of Falls Prevention Month 2019, VON is once again working with Wellington County Safe Communities Falls Prevention Advisory Committee to hand out Fall Prevention placemats to many of the different restaurants in the county. The placemats have the diagram and description of how to get up from a fall, a crossword puzzle to identify ways to prevent falls, a falls screener and a list of the SMART classes. In addition, we will be having Mayor Gregg Davidson will be participating in a SMART class in November to show his support of the exercise classes that help to prevent falls.
The SMART Integrated Falls Prevention Program will take place at the following locations:
Stone Lodge, Guelph
Riverside Glen, Guelph
East Wellington Family Health Team, Erin
Rockwood Family Health Team , Rockwood
Mount Forest District Community Center, Mount Forest
For more information about the SMART Exercise and Fall Prevention Program in Wellington County, check out our website at www.vonsmartexercise.com!