Becky Hall, Director of Nursing at Rumford Hospital is seen here presenting the head of the rehab department, Hope Calderwood, with a gift of appreciation. (Times photo by Cherri Crockett)

Becky Hall, Director of Nursing at Rumford Hospital is seen here presenting the head of the rehab department, Hope Calderwood, with a gift of appreciation. (Times photo by Cherri Crockett)

RUMFORD- Over the past six months Rumford Hospital staff has been working diligently to implement their patient fall prevention program and are happy to report they have had zero incidences in that time.

CEO of Rumford Hospital, David Frum, noted, “This is a pretty remarkable accomplishment for a hospital any size. Our staff is changing the culture and the mindset inside the hospital. Falls are preventable. I’m so very, very proud of you all.”

Becky Hall, Director of Nursing and David Frum, CEO of the hospital, gathered an overflowing roomful of off-duty staff recently to extend their appreciation for their actions over the last 180 days in preventing patient falls and injury.

“I want to extend my sincere thanks to our hospital staff,” noted Hall. “I have never been more proud of everyone than I am today. We are celebrating as a team today because of everyone taking their role in the fall prevention program as seriously as they did.”

According to information obtained from Rumford Hospital, falls are the most common cause of injury during a hospital stay, with enormous human and financial consequences.

Preventing patient falls is a top priority for all Rumford Hospital staff. New best practice approaches have evolved to require all members of the hospital team to think differently.

Hall presented several staff members with gifts of appreciation for their continued dedication to the care of hospital patients, including a new fleece jacket.

“We gave the employees the opportunity to let us know what they wanted to help them better implement this program,” noted Hall. “And they stated very clearly they needed a way to better monitor the patient floor. So, we have installed four large monitors around the nurses station to help them see what’s going on around them.”

In the ongoing effort to eliminate falls, patients and their families are also provided with safety advice upon admission to the hospital. Patients and family members are actively encouraged to call for assistance.

Hall noted, “Rumford Hospital had 35 falls last year. That is six falls per 1,000 patient days and an average cost to the hospital of $15,580 per fall. More important than the financial cost is the cost to the patient’s quality of life, recognizing that the quality of life may be severely impacted after a fall.”
During 2013 Rumford hospital inpatients experienced 35 falls over the course of 5,736 patient days, an average of six falls per 1,000 days. The new fall prevention program was instituted on July 15, 2014, over 2,444 patient days. This marked reduction in patient falls in contrary to the escalating fall rate nationally and demonstrates the success of the new practices that are being utilized by the staff, family and patients with strong support from the administration and the fall prevention team.

A release from Rumford Hospital also stated that the success of the program led to Rumford Hospital applying and being accepted into the NICHE program. (Nurses Improving Care of Healthsystem Elders)

NICHE is one of the premiere national geriatric nursing programs that are designed to address the needs of hospitalized older adults. Currently there are almost 500 hospitals in 45 states as well as Canada, Singapore and Bermuda with NICHE designation. Rumford Hospital is now one of the NICHE sites.
Rumford Hospital will continue to focus on sustaining the success of the fall prevention program. Preventing fall is a top priority for all hospital staff, as they remain aware that one fall could change your entire life.