Ogallala's fall-prevention classes help people stay safe

Contact: Caitlin Wendt, caitlin.wendt@bannerhealth.com

To help people who have fallen and for people vulnerable to falls, Ogallala Community Hospital is offering a fall prevention program for the second time called Stepping On starting Thursday, Oct. 5.   

Stepping On, originally developed by Dr. Lindy Clemson of Sydney, Australia, helps older adults learn ways to prevent falls through education on fall safety, prevention tips and how to build physical strength. According to research from the American Geriatrics Society, people who complete the Stepping On program have a 31 percent reduced rate of falls.

Falls are one of the nation’s leading causes of death and disability in seniors and also a contributing factor to rising health care costs. Nearly 24 percent of Keith County’s population is over the age of 65 and face a higher risk of falling. In 2016, Ogallala Community Hospital had approximately 400 emergency room visits because of falls in the community’s population of people over 65.

“Participants of the class will gain confidence and independence in performing various exercises and reach better balance,” said Cami Brown, RN, Ogallala’s nurse manager and ED/trauma coordinator. “We have also created a safe environment for community members to share their personal fall experiences that others can provide support and learn from.”

Stepping On is a seven-week program hosted once a week for two hours. The program starts Thursday, Oct. 5 from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. and continues for every Thursday through Nov. 16 at Ogallala Community Hospital in the Education Conference Room.

For more information or to register, please call Cami Brown at (308) 284-0246. Snacks will be provided. Classes are free and open to the public, but a small donation of $3 per class is encouraged, but not required.

About Ogallala Community Hospital

Ogallala Community Hospital in Ogallala, Neb., is part of Banner Health, one of the country’s largest nonprofit health care systems with 28 hospitals in six states. OCH offers services including emergency care, inpatient services, infusion therapy, medical imaging, orthopedics, surgery, obstetrics and women’s services. For more information, visit www.BannerHealth.com/Ogallala.