Key Takeaways

  • Each year, on the first day of Fall, the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and its Falls Free® Initiative turns a spotlight on falls prevention among older adults. 

  • Falls Prevention Awareness Week reaches millions of older adults across the country with a simple message: You can take steps to prevent a fall.

  • See the impact of falls prevention campaigns across the country.

Falls have been the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries among older adults, leading to serious injuries and increased risk of additional falls. For years, NCOA has been committed to changing the trajectory of falls-related injuries by helping older adults gain the confidence and skills needed to prevent a fall.

Every year we spearhead Falls Prevention Awareness Week, an awareness and activation campaign that reaches millions of people. Learn more about the impact of these efforts by reading our reports below. 

Falls Prevention Awareness Week 2021 Impact Report

The 14th Annual Falls Prevention Awareness Week was observed by 44 states and reached over 314 million people through education, falls risk screening, advocacy, digital, and traditional media.

NCOA encouraged state falls prevention coalitions and community partners to engage fire and emergency medical services (EMS) in falls prevention efforts and activities. A four-part educational webinar series offered throughout September featured organizations that have successfully partnered with their local fire department and EMS, and shared best practices on how to bridge fire and falls prevention networks.  

Partners continued to direct older adults to the Falls Free CheckUp, which was used by over 7,000 people to understand their falls risk. This report also includes examples falls prevention awareness activities that can be replicated for the next observance. 

Falls Prevention Awareness Week impact throughout the years

Year Summary
2020, Falls Prevention Awareness Week

In a year impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, partners in 36 states spread the word to over 370 million about the importance of falls prevention through traditional media, new media, and community outreach. NCOA also launched the Falls Free CheckUp, a digital screening tool modeled after the 12-question screener included in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Stopping Elderly Accidents, Deaths and Injuries (STEADI) Stay Independent brochure. Over 4,000 users completed the tool and received a copy of their personalized results sent to their email.

Download the report (link).

2019, Falls Prevention Awareness Day

The 12th Annual Falls Prevention Awareness Day engaged organizations in 49 states and reached 300 million people with messages about preventing falls through social media, grass roots education, advocacy, and media.

Download the report (link).

2018, Falls Prevention Awareness Day

The 11th Annual Falls Prevention Awareness Day was observed by 43 states and the District of Columbia. National awareness and media efforts collectively reached 154.7 million individuals through national, state and local press releases, Twitter, Facebook, and more. At the state and community level, the State Falls Prevention Coalitions members reached 2.5 million individuals through fall risk screenings, participation in community-based falls prevention programs, and public awareness events. 

Download the report (link).

This project was supported, in part by grant number 90FPSG0051 from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration for Community Living policy.