NYC Aims to Prevent Elderly Falls

By Melissa Russo and Amanda Hemenway
|  Friday, Sep 23, 2011  |  Updated 5:26 PM EDT
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NYC Aims to Prevent Elderly Falls

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Each year, some 300 elderly New Yorkers die from injuries related to falling down, and more than 24,000 end up in the emergency room, according to the city Department for the Aging.

"You accelerate your mortality by years once you have a fall,” Commissioner Lilliam Barrios-Paoli said.

Eighty-one-year-old Felice Fedder knows the dangers all too well.

“I try to be careful. I try to be conscious of where I put my foot. I’m an old lady,” Fedder told NBC New York. 

The city is trying to lower the alarming statistics with a range of efforts, including fitness classes at local senior centers.

“Keeping your balance is all a matter of good posture -- feeling your weight, being able to shift your weight quickly. Reaction time is really important,” said Mary Ann Wilson, host of the fitness show "Sit and Be Fit."
 
Other tips for seniors:

  • Review medications with your doctor -- some can increase the risk of falling.
  • Check your vision regularly.
  • And eliminate tripping hazards at home including poor lighting, excess clutter and unsecured rugs.

 For more information on fall prevention, go here.
 

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