Date of Paper/Work


Type of Paper/Work

Doctoral Project

Degree Name

Doctor of Occupational Therapy


Occupational Science/Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Stephanie de Sam Lazaro


Doctor of Occupational Therapy


Introduction: Many older adults experience injurious and non-injurious falls each year, with many of the falls happening at or around the home. Falls cost the health care system over $51 billion dollars each year. There are many risk factors for experiencing a fall with social determinants of health being a large factor.

Purpose: The purpose of this capstone project was to increase the identification of fall risk factors to reduce fall rates among the independent living population at Episcopal Homes and develop a fall risk screen and referral guide.

Approach: Three active participants took part in an educational session developed to educate staff on the newly developed lay fall screen and referral guide. An anonymous optional survey was provided to participants to explore effectiveness of the education and to receive feedback on the screen and referral guide.

Outcomes: On four of the five scaled survey items, all 3 respondents indicated the same response, yes, in regard to 1) the screen being helpful for residents, 2) the screen serving a purpose and being helpful, 3) the referral guide being helpful, and 4) the educational session was beneficial. On the fifth scaled item, 2/3 participants indicated they would be very likely to implement the screen into their role, with one participant being neutral. Implications: Implementing the screen into practice at Episcopal Homes may reduce fall rates throughout the site. Interprofessional communication and role competency may also be improved through the screen and referral guide. Additionally, it is recommended that occupational therapy practitioners advocate for their role within fall prevention.