Given the rapid aging of the population, we can expect the number of older adult falls and fall-related injuries and deaths to increase exponentially unless we make a serious commitment to providing evidence-based, fall risk screening and assessments, and appropriate interventions to those increasingly at risk. National, state, and local partners are coming together to address this growing public health issue through evidence-based interventions that promote collaboration between public health, health care, and aging service providers. Physical therapists are uniquely positioned to make a significant contribution to this effort and to promote older adult participation in programs and services that can augment or supplement the plan of treatment. The purpose of this special interest paper is to describe the efforts of the National Council on Aging's Falls Free Initiative and the role that physical therapists and other rehabilitation professionals can play in community-based programs aimed at reducing risk and occurrence of falls in later life.
Falls Free Initiative, National Council on Aging, Washington, District of Columbia.
Address correspondence to: Bonita Lynn Beattie, PT, MPT, MHA, Falls Free© Initiative, National Council on Aging, 1901 L St, NW, 4th Floor, Washington, DC 20036 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
The National Council on Aging's Falls Free© Initiative is funded in large part by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the US Administration on Aging. Other sources of funding include the Archstone Foundation and Humana, Inc.
The author declares no conflicts of interest.