Falls are the most common cause of injuries for older people in Sweden. Four elderly people die every day because of a fall and nearly 50,000 were injured in 2015. Antrop and the National Board of Health and Wealth have cooperated to help prevent this.
Falls are the type of accident leading to the highest number of deaths, the highest number of hospitalisations and visits to emergency centers in Sweden. Fatal accidents has increased. More than 1,000 Swedes die each year in falls, which is more than twice as many since 2000.
Most often, older people are affected falling in their own homes, and the bedroom and bathroom are the places where most falls occur. The social costs of elderly people falling is more than SEK 11 billion a year.
Service design to prevent falls
In order to reduce the number of falls, the National Board of Health and Welfare was commissioned by the government to carry out an education initiative in fall prevention for the elderly. Antrop was contacted to help with this.
Together with the National Board of Health and Welfare, we realized early that it would not be enough to work with health professionals competence. In order to make a difference, better interaction between involved actors and procedures was needed. There is a focus on healthcare to cure falls only after they have occurred, because then, the healthcare is forced to act. This happens despite the fact that research clearly shows that health promotion is significantly more resource efficient.
Research for better insight
Antrop conducted a behaviour analysis based on interviews and usability tests with staff and managers in health and social care. Based on the insights generated; target groups, customer journeys and scenarios were created that clarify the driving forces and needs of the various players.
It became clear that there is no actor who has the overall picture of the elderly's health. Fall prevention involves a lot of physical exercise and home security to prevent the accident from occurring. In order for it to work in practice, someone who often motivates the elderly is often needed, which is often lacking today. The interviews showed that there is a strong willingness to work preventively but also that staff lack knowledge and tools for doing so.
A place to prevent falls
Based on the behaviour analysis, Antrop developed concepts tested with the target groups. The final result became a website where all actors working in care for the elderly can be gathered. The site will contain open and personalised information on falls at all levels.
Decision makers will be motivated to introduce new methods through relevant statistics and information on falls. Healthcare staff will be able to train, set competence goals and find practical tools to prevent falls. The site will also enable operators to exchange experience and knowledge.
The National Board of Health and Welfare
The National Board of Health and Welfare in Sweden (Socialstyrelsen) is a state authority under the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs with a wide range of social services and health services. Most of the activities are directed at staff, managers and decision makers in these areas.