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Grantee in the News: Sharon K. Inouye on the consequences of limiting mobility in JAMA

May 1
2017

Grantee in the News: Sharon K. Inouye on the consequences of limiting mobility in JAMA View MoreBACK

On April 24, 2017, the Journal of the American Medical Association published research co-authored by 1989 AFAR Research Grant recipient, Sharon K. Inouye, MD, MPH on the impact of hospital policies limiting patient mobility.

In The Tension Between Promoting Mobility and Preventing Falls in the Hospital, Dr. Inouye and fellow researchers found that healthcare providers falsely assume limiting the mobility of their older patients reduces the risk of falling. The study found no evidence that widely used hospital fall prevention programs avert injurious falls. The team also found that restricting movement is associated with an “increased risk of functional decline, medical adverse events, and hospital readmission.”

The study recommends new measures to increase mobility, like supervised walks with mobility aids and trained staff or volunteers, instead of incentivizing strategies that keep patients in their beds.

The Journal of the American Medical Association is only accessible with a subscription, but an abstract is available here. The research was recognized in a related feature story on Healio that can be viewed here.

Sharon K. Inouye, MD, MPH is the Director of the Aging Brain Center at the Institute for Aging Research and a Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.


For more on the risk factors and consequences of falling, we encourage you to explore AFAR Medical Officer Richard Besdine’s Huffington Post 50 blog post “Fear of Falling” here.





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