HD Nursing Stresses Need for Fall Prevention: New Joint Commission Report Categorizes Falls as Most Common Hospital Sentinel Event, Increases Length-of-Stay

BENTON, Ark.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–HD Nursing, the leading patient safety solution that combines predictive analytics with individualized fall and pressure injury prevention, underscores the critical need for enhanced patient safety measures as emphasized in a recent report from The Joint Commission. The report points to patient falls as the most common sentinel event in hospital settings during 2023, accounting for a staggering 48% of reported incidents and significantly surpassing other critical events, such as wrong surgeries and delays in treatment.

“This report sounds an alarm throughout the healthcare delivery community and calls for significant improvement which can be accomplished through innovative, data-driven solutions for fall assessment and prevention,” says Amy Hester, PhD, RN, BC, FAAN, chairwoman and CEO, HD Nursing.

In the report, of the 672 reported patient falls, 26 (4%) resulted in death, 56 (8%) in permanent harm, and 538 (80%) in severe harm to the patient, including injuries such as fractures and head injury/bleed.

“By leveraging HD Nursing’s predictive analytics and individualized preventive care, our evidence-based programs mitigate risks, ensuring better outcomes and safer environments for patients,” continues Dr. Hester. “Studies also confirm that falls lead to additional treatments or prolonged hospital stays which increase the cost of care.”

  • AHRQ reports that falls can be highly detrimental, often accelerating patient decline and causing longer hospital stays.
  • A February 2024 analysis by Kaufman Hall showcases significant cost savings for hospitals that optimize patient flow and minimize unnecessary days.

By significantly reducing falls and injuries, HD Nursing’s Falls Program helps prevent avoidable increases in length of stays, leading to substantial cost savings. For example, one client experienced annual savings of over $10 million due to reduced length of stay associated with fewer falls. The methodology involved analyzing the client’s baseline fall rate and calculating additional bed days due to falls, using conservative cost-per-day rates.

“This data confirms the urgent need for proactive measures to mitigate risks and enhance patient care safety standards,” says Dr. Hester. “Against a backdrop of nationwide hospital capacity challenges, the financial benefits of reducing length of stay are quite evident.”

About HD Nursing

Established in 2012, HD Nursing has become the dominant patient safety solution and the only fall risk assessment tool validated in the electronic medical record. With a comprehensive, evidence-based approach combining predictive analytics with individualized fall and fall injury prevention patient care, our solution is documented to reduce patient falls and injuries and is employed by leading health systems and academic medical centers nationwide. Our team is fully committed to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion. Silver Stevie® Award winner as Company of the Year – Health Products & Services category in the 22nd Annual American Business Awards®. https://www.hdnursing.com/


Brittany Tedesco

CPR Marketing for HD Nursing

201.641.1911 x 14