Boston, MA (September 19, 2012) – National Falls Prevention Day is Monday, September 24th. Ethos, the Jamaica Plain-based elder services non-profit, announced today that its AgeWell West Roxbury program will be available on that day to give out information about Falls Prevention. Representatives and volunteers will have a table set up next to the U.S. Post Office at 1834 Centre Street in West Roxbury from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. There will be a demonstration of Ethos’ “Tai Chi: Moving For Better Balance” program at 11:30 a.m. The community is encouraged to come and learn about Ethos AgeWell West Roxbury Programs to help elders prevent falls.
Falls are common; each year, one in three adults over 65 suffers a fall. For the elderly these falls can be devastating or even deadly; one in 10 falls results in serious injury; and in 2004, falls were responsible for nearly 15,000 deaths.
The financial toll due to falls is also quite significant. According to the Centers for Disease Control, direct medical costs for fall-related injuries totaled $19 billion (in 2000) and it is expected to reach $54.9 billion by the year 2020. In Massachusetts alone, those costs totaled $500 million (in 2006). In a study of people age 72 and older, published in a journal by the American Public Health Association, the average health care cost of a fall injury totaled $19,440, which included hospital, nursing home, emergency room, and home health care, but not doctors’ services.
Ethos’ AgeWell West Roxbury Program supports the well-being of elderly and disabled with the goal of helping seniors “age in place” by offering free or low-cost educational workshops focused on preventing falls, managing their health, checking or delaying chronic conditions, and decreasing social isolation.
In particular, AgeWell West Roxbury offers two evidence-based workshops focused on improving balance and reducing falls: “Tai Chi: Moving for Better Balance” and; “A Matter of Balance.” Research evidence from scientifically controlled studies has clearly demonstrated the effectiveness of Tai Chi exercise in improving balance and reducing the frequency of falls among older adults. “A Matter of Balance” is designed to reduce the fear of falling and increase activity levels among older adults.
To learn more about Ethos AgeWell West Roxbury Falls Prevention programs, please visit www.ethocare.org or call 617-522-6700.