Information for the public

Assessing and reducing your risk of falling in hospital

Assessing and reducing your risk of falling in hospital

Hospital staff should make the hospital as safe as possible so that people are less likely to fall. This includes looking at things like flooring, lighting, furniture and fittings (such as hand holds) in wards, toilets and other parts of the hospital.

You may be offered an assessment of your risk of falling in hospital, which aims to identify things that might make you more likely to fall. These could include:

  • whether you have fallen in the past, what caused this and how it has affected you – for example, if you were hurt, or if it has made you worried about falling again

  • the medicines you are taking

  • any problems with balance or walking

  • whether your footwear is suitable

  • problems with bladder control

  • poor eyesight

  • problems with memory or understanding

  • if you have a condition called syncope (fainting that is caused by a brief reduction in blood flow to the brain)

  • any other health problems that may increase your chances of falling.

After the assessment, healthcare professionals may suggest a plan to reduce your chances of falling during your hospital stay. The plan should look at your particular needs, and should aim to help with any problems that have been found. For example, your medicines might be changed, or you may be offered footwear that fits better, or help with going to the toilet.

  • Information Standard