NSW Falls Prevention Network e-news
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e-Newsletter 5 2019

Welcome to our e-newsletter

Upcoming Events

Falls Prevention Network Rural Forums

Western NSW
Dubbo Zoo
Tuesday 3rd September
Registrations open at My Health Learning Course Code 251555756
for external registrations email

Northern NSW
Ballina RSL, Ballina
Friday 1st November
2019 NSW Falls Prevention Network Forum Feedback

The NSW Falls Prevention Network Forum was held on Friday the 31st of May at the Wesley Conference Centre, Sydney. Overall there were 407 attendees from hospitals, community services, residential aged care and health promotion.

Overall 97% of respondents rated the forum as 4 or 5 out of 5.
The key messages that respondents gained from attending the forum included:
  • Exercise intervention - high challenge balance training is key, dosage is important
  • Walking is not a falls prevention strategy
  • Multifactorial and multidisciplinary approach to falls prevention
  • Importance of specialised/individualised prevention strategies
Suggestions on improving the forum or activities of the network included:
  • More practical sessions
  • More project presentations from acut care seting
  • Strategies to take back to the workplace
  • How to disseminate information in the community
The presentations from the most recent NSW Falls Network Forum are now available on the website
Employment Opportunity
NSW Falls Prevention Network – Project Officer (0.5 FTE)

The NSW Falls Prevention Network and NeuRA is seeking a highly motivated individual to take on the role of Project Officer for the network. The successful applicant will have the key role of progressing the goal of the prevention of falls and harm from falls among older people through supporting consultation, cooperation and liaison between those involved in falls prevention and to provide the latest fall prevention research evidence, information and resources to support falls prevention practice and policy.
The Project Officer position will be based at NeuRA, Randwick in Sydney.

The position description can be viewed and downloaded here

To Apply

To apply for this position please submit CV and cover letter addressing the criteria to Linda Roylance at
You must have the right to live and work in Australia.
Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA) is an Equal Employment Opportunity Employer. We are committed to promoting equality of opportunity and eliminating discrimination in all our employment policies and practices.
Closing date: Saturday 31 August 2019
Research Update

The Flooring for Injury Prevention (FLIP) Study of compliant flooring for the prevention of fall-related injuries in long-term care: A randomized trial
Mackey DC, Lachance CC, Wang PT, Feldman F, Laing AC, et al. (2019)
PLOS Medicine 16(6): e1002843.

Fall-related injuries exert an enormous health burden on older adults in long-term care (LTC). Softer landing surfaces, such as those provided by low-stiffness “compliant” flooring, may prevent fall-related injuries by decreasing the forces applied to the body during fall impact. Our primary objective was to assess the clinical effectiveness of compliant flooring at preventing serious fall-related injuries among LTC residents.

Methods and findings
The Flooring for Injury Prevention (FLIP) Study was a 4-year, randomized superiority trial in 150 single-occupancy resident rooms at a single Canadian LTC site. In April 2013, resident rooms were block randomized (1:1) to installation of intervention compliant flooring (2.54 cm SmartCells) or rigid control flooring (2.54 cm plywood) covered with identical hospital-grade vinyl. The primary outcome was serious fall-related injury over 4 years that required an emergency department visit or hospital admission and a treatment procedure or diagnostic evaluation in hospital. Secondary outcomes included minor fall-related injury, any fallrelated injury, falls, and fracture. Outcomes were ascertained by blinded assessors between September 1, 2013 and August 31, 2017 and analyzed by intention to treat. Adverse outcomes were not assessed. During follow-up, 184 residents occupied 74 intervention rooms, and 173 residents occupied 76 control rooms. Residents were 64.3% female with mean (SD) baseline age 81.7 (9.5) years (range 51.1 to 104.6 years), body mass index 25.9 (7.7) kg/m2 , and follow-up 1.64 (1.39) years. 1,907 falls were reported; 23 intervention residents experienced 38 serious injuries (from 29 falls in 22 rooms), while 23 control residents experienced 47 serious injuries (from 34 falls in 23 rooms). Compliant flooring did not affect odds of ≥ 1 serious fall-related injury (12.5% intervention versus 13.3% control, odds ratio [OR]: 0.98, 95% CI: 0.52 to 1.84, p = 0.950) or ≥ 2 serious fall-related injuries (5.4% versus 7.5%, OR: 0.74, 95% CI: 0.31 to 1.75, p = 0.500). Compliant flooring did not affect rate of serious fall-related injuries (0.362 versus 0.422 per 1,000 bed nights, rate ratio [RR]: 1.04, 95% CI: 0.45 to 2.39, p = 0.925; 0.038 versus 0.053 per fall, RR: 0.81, 95% CI: 0.38 to 1.71, p = 0.560), rate of falls with ≥ 1 serious fall-related injury (0.276 versus 0.303 per 1,000 bed nights, RR: 0.97, 95% CI: 0.52 to 1.79, p = 0.920), or time to first serious fall-related injury (0.237 versus 0.257, hazard ratio [HR]: 0.92, 95% CI: 0.52 to 1.62, p = 0.760). Compliant flooring did not affect any secondary outcome in this study. Study limitations included the following: findings were specific to 2.54 cm SmartCells compliant flooring installed in LTC resident rooms, standard fall and injury prevention interventions were in use throughout the study and may have influenced the observed effect of compliant flooring, and challenges with concussion detection in LTC residents may have prevented estimation of the effect of compliant flooring on fall-related concussions.

In contrast to results from previous retrospective and nonrandomized studies, this study found that compliant flooring underneath hospital-grade vinyl was not effective at preventing serious fall-related injuries in LTC. Future studies are needed to identify effective methods for preventing fall-related injuries in LTC.

Trial registration NCT01618786

Farewell and Thank you!

Last month we said good bye to Esther Vance, the project officer for the NSW Falls Network for the last 13 and a half years. Esther has made an enormous contribution to the network in that time and will be greatly missed. We wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

Share your news

Do you have any news on Falls Prevention you want to share with others on the network, or report on a project that is happening in your area. We also welcome suggestions for articles and information you would like to see in this newsletter.  
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