Fall Precautions When Hospitalized

  • Even if you generally have no problems with falling or instability, it is necessary to realize that the hospital is an unfamiliar environment, which can increase any patient's risk for falling, especially at night.
  • Be sure to ask for help if you are instructed to do so or if you feel the need.
  • Some treatments and medications used in the hospital may make you experience urgency when needing to use the bathroom. Be sure to call for help with plenty of time to get up to the bathroom.
  • Do not use the over-the-bed table for support when getting up. It has wheels on it and can roll out from under you.
  • Ask staff to position your bed in the low position with your call light, water and other personal needs within easy reach before leaving your room.
  • If you feel unsteady when getting up, ask staff to provide you with support, such as a cane or walker while you are hospitalized. Do not use walls or furniture for support.
  • Hospitalized patients sometimes become confused, especially at night. It may be in the best interest of the patient to ask family members to stay with their loved one.

Adapted from the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.