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Preventing falls in the hospital

  When people become hospital patients, they often feel weaker than usual or more confused due to their medical condition. When trying to move around in an unfamiliar hospital setting, they may fall and get hurt.
Keeping you safe

What to expect as a hospital patient

If you are a patient at an Allina hospital, you can expect your nurses and other hospital staff members to use proven methods to keep you safe:

  • Evaluation – Throughout your stay, hospital staff members will ask you a series of questions and watch for certain signs to determine whether you're at risk of falling.
  • Verbal contract – If there is a chance you may lose your balance, staff members will have you agree to call for help and not try to get up from your bed or chair without help.
  • Visual cues – A magnet at your door, a red blanket on your bed, or red socks on your feet may be used to let everyone caring for you know that you may need extra help getting around.
  • Safe environment – Items like safety straps and non-skid footwear, and regular hourly rounding checks also may help keep you from falling.

How is Allina doing?

National safety patient goal: Reduce the risk of patient harm resulting from falls.
We report on how well our hospitals' fall reduction programs are doing to the Joint Commission, an independent, non-profit agency that sets standards for health care.

Visit to see how our hospitals compare to others throughout the nation in fall prevention and other national safety patient goals.

Minnesota's adverse health events report
Falls resulting in serious injury are among the 29 adverse health events that we report to the Minnesota Department of Health.

In January 2014, the Minnesota Department of Health released the ninth annual adverse health events report. The report documents 43 adverse events at Allina Health hospitals. They included 11 falls. To look up information about a specific hospital, visit

We work with other hospital and health care systems to promote patient safety by participating in efforts like the Minnesota Hospital Association's SAFE from FALLS initiative.

The Minnesota Hospital Association honored these Allina Health hospitals with a Patient Safety Excellence Award for their efforts to prevent falls.

Return to rating patient care, safety and satisfaction Rating patient care, safety and satisfaction


Source: Allina Hospitals & Clinics Falls Prevention Collaborative

First published: 08/29/2008
Last updated: 01/28/2011

Reviewed by: Nancy Kielhofner, director of quality / patient safety, worker's compensation and safety, Allina Hospitals & Clinics


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