Optimizing Post-Acute Care Patient Safety: A Scoping Review of Multifactorial Fall Prevention Interventions for Older Adults

J Appl Gerontol. 2022 Oct;41(10):2187-2196. doi: 10.1177/07334648221104375. Epub 2022 May 26.


Accidental falls are preventable adverse events for older post-acute care (PAC) patients. Yet, due to the functional and medical care needs of this population, there is little guidance to inform multidisciplinary prevention efforts. This scoping review aims to characterize the evidence for multifactorial PAC fall prevention interventions. Of the 33 included studies, common PAC intervention domains included implementing facility-based strategies (e.g., staff education), evaluating patient-specific fall risk factors (e.g., function), and developing an individualized risk profile and treatment plan that targets the patient's constellation of fall risk factors. However, there was variability across studies in how and to what extent the domains were addressed. While further research is warranted, health system efforts to prevent accidental falls in PAC should consider a patient-centered multifactorial approach that fosters a culture of safety, addresses individuals' fall risk, and champions a multidisciplinary team.

Keywords: accidental falls; fall prevention; geriatrics; post-acute care; rehabilitation.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls* / prevention & control
  • Aged
  • Humans
  • Risk Factors
  • Subacute Care*