Older persons' perception of risk of falling : implications for fall-prevention campaigns

Hughes, Karen, van Beurden, Eric, Eakin, Elizabeth, Barnett, Lisa, Patterson, Elizabeth, Backhouse, Jan, Jones, Sue, Hauser, Darren, Beard, John and Newman, Beth 2008, Older persons' perception of risk of falling : implications for fall-prevention campaigns, American journal of public health, vol. 98, no. 2, pp. 351-357.

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Title Older persons' perception of risk of falling : implications for fall-prevention campaigns
Author(s) Hughes, Karen
van Beurden, Eric
Eakin, Elizabeth
Barnett, Lisa
Patterson, Elizabeth
Backhouse, Jan
Jones, Sue
Hauser, Darren
Beard, John
Newman, Beth
Journal name American journal of public health
Volume number 98
Issue number 2
Start page 351
End page 357
Total pages 7
Publisher American Public Health Association
Place of publication New York, N.Y.
Publication date 2008-02
ISSN 0090-0036
1541-0048
Summary Objectives. We examined older people's attitudes about falls and implications for the design of fall-prevention awareness campaigns.

Methods
. We assessed data from (1) computer-assisted telephone surveys conducted in 2002 with Australians 60 years and older in Northern Rivers, New South Wales (site of a previous fall-prevention program; n=1601), and Wide Bay, Queensland (comparison community; n=1601), and (2) 8 focus groups (n=73).

Results. Participants from the previous intervention site were less likely than were comparison participants to agree that falls are not preventable (odds ratio [OR]=0.76; 95% confidence interval [Cl]=0.65, 0.90) and more likely to rate the prevention of falls a high priority (OR=1.31; 95% CI=1.09, 1.57). There was no difference between the groups for self-perceived risk of falls; more than 60% rated their risk as low. Those with a low perceived risk were more likely to be men, younger, partnered, and privately insured, and to report better health and no history of falls. Focus group data indicated that older people preferred messages that emphasized health and independence rather than falls.

Conclusions.
Although older people accepted traditional fall-prevention messages, most viewed them as not personally relevant. Messages that promote health and independence may be more effective.
Language eng
Field of Research 111716 Preventive Medicine
Socio Economic Objective 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
HERDC collection year 2008
Copyright notice ©2008, APHA
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30017551

Document type: Journal Article
Collection: School of Health and Social Development
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