Falls Links 

 November 2022 | Issue 5 

Welcome to our newsletter

Our goal is to support practitioners to improve the lives of older Australians through healthy ageing initiatives with a focus on preventing falls and fall-related injuries.


In this issue of Falls Links:

  • Tickets now available and call for abstracts for the 2023 NSW Fall Prevention and Healthy Ageing Falls Forum
  • AIHW report on dementia in Australia
  • Upcoming events including
    - Australian and New Zealand Falls Prevention Society report launch ‘Why investing in prevention can’t wait’.
    - Safety 2022 conference
    - Exercise to Prevent Falls in Older People for Fitness Professionals workshop
  • Release of the world guidelines for fall prevention
  • Looking for somewhere to refer clients for exercise?

NSW Fall Prevention and Healthy Ageing Network 2023
Annual Falls Forum

Friday 26th May, 2023, Wesley Conference Centre, Sydney

The NSW Fall Prevention and Healthy Ageing Network falls forum provides an opportunity to learn about the latest on fall prevention and healthy ageing. Listen to experts in their field provide an overview of fall prevention following a stroke, healthy ageing, policy and practice and an update on the research.


In-person tickets will also include access to the live-stream on the day in the event you cannot attend. Live stream includes all plenary sessions, the afternoon split sessions and the new research findings afternoon session.


Plenary Speakers Include:

  • Pam Albany Guest Lecture: Professor Anne Tiedemann, Robinson Fellow, Institute for Musculoskeletal Health, Sydney
    School of Public Health
  • Associate Professor Frances Batchelor, Principal Research Fellow, Director of Clinical Gerontology, Research Lead Melbourne Ageing Research Collaboration, NARI
  • Scientia Professor Stephen Lord, Senior Principal Research Fellow; Centre Director, Falls Balance and Injury Research Centre, NeuRA
  • Professor Cathie Sherrington, Institute for Musculoskeletal Health and School of Public
    Health, University of Sydney/ Sydney Local Health District
  • Professor Kim Delbaere, Senior Principal Research Scientist, NeuRA; Director of Innovation & Translation, Falls, Balance & Injury Research Centre; School of Population Health, UNSW

A panel discussion on translating research into practice including clinicians, policy makers and researchers including audience Q&A will be held.


Afternoon workshops include:

  • Best practice fall prevention programs within the hospitals
    This session will highlight best practice programs being developed and implemented in Hospitals across the state to provide better care and reduce falls in patients.
  • Residential and Community Aged Care in the AN-ACC era
    The introduction of the Australian National Aged Care Classification (AN-ACC) in October 2022 brought large changes for allied health use in Aged Care. This session will highlight exercise programs and other strategies implemented by Residential and Community Aged Care providers to help their clients stay healthy and active.
  • Exercise prescription, demonstration and discussion
    This session will provide an exercise demonstration and overview of prescription of exercise for older people in the community. During this interactive workshop, attendees will engage in activities to develop practical skills for designing and delivering exercise programs for fall prevention.

Call for Abstracts for Best Practice Initiatives

We are seeking abstracts for a showcase of falls best-practice initiatives in hospitals and residential and communtiy aged care settings.


Types of presentations:
1. Oral – 12minute presentation followed by Q&A

Call for Abstracts for Presentations of Research Findings by Higher Degree Researchers (PhD candidates, Masters and Honours Students and Post-Doctoral Researchers).


We are seeking abstracts for a showcase of new research findings in fall prevention or healthy ageing.


Types of presentations:
1. Oral – 10minute presentation followed by Q&A

Please complete the attached Best Practice Initiative application or Presentation of Research Findings application and return by March 31, 2023 to fallsnetwork@neura.edu.au.

All submissions will be reviewed.

Dementia in Australia

Australian Institute of health and Welfare (2022)

Dementia is a significant and growing health and aged care issue in Australia that has a substantial impact on the health and quality of life of people with the condition, as well as their family and friends. As the condition progresses, the functional ability of an individual with dementia declines, eventually resulting in the reliance on care providers in all aspects of daily living. There are strategies that can assist in maintaining independence and quality of life for as long as possible.


It is estimated that almost $3.0 billion of the total direct health and aged care system expenditure in 2018–19 was directly attributable to the diagnosis, treatment and care of people with dementia.


Breakdown of health and aged care expenditure:

There are a number of factors that can increase a person’s likelihood of developing dementia. Some risk factors can be avoided or reduced (known as ‘modifiable risk factors’) and others cannot be changed (known as ‘non-modifiable risk factors’).


The World Health Organization has developed recommendations on the types of interventions that should be adopted to reduce risks associated with cognitive decline and dementia. These include a number of cognitive, behavioural, social and pharmacological interventions aimed at improving health overall and reducing exposure to known modifiable risk factors associated with dementia.

Protective factors for dementia include:

  • undertaking regular physical activity and eating a healthy, balanced diet
  • maintaining a healthy weight
  • quitting smoking and reducing alcohol intake
  • maintaining an active social life
  • keeping mentally stimulated
  • managing other health conditions, such as hypertension, hearing loss, diabetes and depression

Further information about risk factors for dementia can be found here.


Dementia and Falls

Fractures of the femur account for 6.3% of hospitalisations for people where dementia was an additional diagnosis. Falls were the cause for 97% of hospitalisations due to fractures of the femur and 95% of hospitalisations due to fractures of the lumbar spine and pelvis where dementia was an additional diagnosis.

Upcoming Events


Join us online 24 Nov 10-11am AEST as the Australian and New Zealand Falls Prevention Society (ANZFPS) and partners launch ‘The rising cost of falls: why investing in prevention can’t wait’ report.


We support the call for a national strategic plan to reduce the burden of falls and fall-related injuries.

Hybrid Conference, 27th - 30th November 2022

The Adelaide Convention Centre, Adelaide


Safety 2022 aims to bring together the global injury prevention community to continue the successful world conferences highlighting the important research, work and advocacy in injury prevention and safety promotion.

The Conference aims to facilitate global, inclusive and diverse conversations on addressing the gaps in injury prevention and safety promotion. Attendees will include policy makers, government officials, researchers, community and NGO workers, practitioners, academics, funders of prevention programs, safety officers, local council workers, workplace health and safety representatives, health professionals, drug and alcohol workers.


Includes Spotlight Session:

FALLS: What must change to stem the global rise in falls in older adults?


This session will focus on solutions and features leaders from around the world. We will hear from the World Health Organization and researchers with expertise in community, hospital and residential care settings. The session will address the urgency of fall prevention in lower- and middle-income countries and for disadvantaged people in higher income countries. This session will help us all do more to prevent falls.



  • Professor Ngaire Kerse, Chair in Ageing Well, University of Auckland, Waipapa Taumata Rau, New Zealand
  • Professor Tan Maw Pin, Division of Geriatric Medicine, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumper
  • Professor Pip Logan, School of Medicine, Division of Rehabilitation and Ageing, University of Nottingham, UK
  • Mr David Meddings, Department of the Social Determinants of Health, World Health Organization


Registrations are still open for Safety 2022.

NSW Fall Prevention and Healthy Ageing Network Hybrid Workshop: Exercise to Prevent Falls in Older People

for Fitness Professionals


For Fitness Professionals

Saturday 11th February 2023, 9am - 12:30pm AEDT

Location: NeuRA 139 Barker St, Randwick 2031 + Online theory modules


A comprehensive program to equip you with the practical skills to develop evidence-based fall prevention strategies.


Workshop Schedule

  • 6 online learning modules completed through our online learning platform. To be completed prior to the practical session*.
  • A 3hr face-to-face practical session including fall risk screening, case study discussions, exercise demonstrations and an opportunity to develop and present an exercise program.

About this course

This continuing education program will equip Fitness Professionals with important information to guide the provision of appropriate falls prevention physical activity and exercise programs for older people. Topics to be covered include the social and economic issues of falls, risk factors for falls, physiological consequences of ageing, biomechanical and physiological principles of balance, and effective falls prevention strategies.


In undertaking the program, participants will be trained to develop safe and efficacious community exercise programs for older adults that are designed in a manner to maximise uptake and adherence of those populations who stand to most benefit from exercise. Through structured learning tasks across a number of different learning formats, participants will acquire the knowledge and ability to identify, develop, demonstrate and implement evidence-based exercise interventions designed to enhance physical and functional capacity and prevent falls and fall related injury.


This workshop includes:

  • An overview of the issue of falls in older people
  • Understanding balance and ageing
  • Evidence-based fall prevention interventions
  • Developing fall prevention programs

*Access to online modules Friday 27th January, 2023.


Ticket cost

$120.00 including tax. Places are limited.

Research Update

World guidelines for falls prevention and management for older adults: a global initiative

Montero-Odasso, M., van der Velde, N., Martin, F.C. et al. 2022. doi:10.1093/ageing/afac205

Age and Ageing, Volume 51, Issue 9, September 2022

The World guidelines for fall prevention and management for older adults were launched at the recent Fragility Fracture Network Congress in Melbourne last week. Developed by a task force of 96 experts across 39 countries they aimed to provide guidelines for healthcare professionals working with older adults on how to identify and assess the risk of falls and identify which interventions, alone or in combination, to offer as part of a person-centred approach.


Key Points
• The world’s population is ageing. Falls and related injuries are increasingly common, making their prevention and
management a critical global challenge.
• Opportunistic case-finding is necessary as older adults may not present following a fall and may be reluctant to report
• Multidomain interventions tailored to individual’s risks factors, when delivered, are effective.
• Engaging older individual’s beliefs, attitudes and priorities about falls and their management is essential.
• Application of some of these recommendations may need modification to meet low resource settings and country’s needs. 

Falls and fall-related injuries are common in older adults, have negative effects on functional independence and quality of life and are associated with increased morbidity, mortality and health related costs. Current guidelines are inconsistent, with no up-to-date, globally applicable ones present.

To create a set of evidence- and expert consensus-based falls prevention and management recommendations applicable to older adults for use by healthcare and other professionals that consider: (i) a person-centred approach that includes the perspectives of older adults with lived experience, caregivers and other stakeholders; (ii) gaps in previous guidelines; (iii) recent developments in e-health and (iv) implementation across locations with limited access to resources such as low- and middle-income countries.

A steering committee and a worldwide multidisciplinary group of experts and stakeholders, including older adults, were assembled. Geriatrics and gerontological societies were represented. Using a modified Delphi process, recommendations from 11 topic-specific working groups (WGs), 10 ad-hoc WGs and a WG dealing with the perspectives of older adults were reviewed and refined. The final recommendations were determined by voting.

All older adults should be advised on falls prevention and physical activity. Opportunistic case finding for falls risk is recommended for community-dwelling older adults. Those considered at high risk should be offered a comprehensive multifactorial falls risk assessment with a view to co-design and implement personalised multidomain interventions. Other recommendations cover details of assessment and intervention components and combinations, and recommendations for specific settings and populations.

The core set of recommendations provided will require flexible implementation strategies that consider both local context and resources.


Looking for somewhere to refer clients for exercise?

One of the challenges in encouraging someone to exercise for healthy ageing or fall prevention is finding a suitable local exercise class. Don't forget to check out these fantastic services!

This website can help you find an exercise program in your local area and provides information and tools that can assist you to increase your physical activity.


To find a class near you visit


Stepping On is a FREE 7-week fall prevention program for adults aged 65 years and over and Aboriginal adults aged 45 years and over.


- The program will help participants learn how to reduce their risk of falling and how to maintain their independence.

- Stepping On includes gentle group exercise to improve balance and educational talks from experts.

-Topics covered include home hazards, community safety, managing medications and more.

- No prior knowledge or exercise experience is required!


To refer a client to Stepping On, or to register yourself, call 1800 255 774 or visit https://www.activeandhealthy.nsw.gov.au/home/stepping-on/

Healthy and Active for Life Online is a FREE 10-week healthy lifestyle program for adults aged 60 years and over and Aboriginal adults aged 45 years and over.


- The program will help participants learn how to make small, sustainable changes in their lifestyle to improve their health.
- The program covers lots of topics including healthy eating and physical activity.
- No prior knowledge or exercise experience is required!


To register for HAL Online visit https://www.activeandhealthy.nsw.gov.au/home/healthy-and-active-for-life-online/

Living Longer Living Stronger is an exciting and affordable exercise program to help people over 50 improve their physical strength and fitness. It is a progressive training program designed to improve strength, balance, coordination and endurance.


Run by COTA and delivered by accredited exercise physiologists, physiotherapists and fitness professionals, Living Longer Living Stronger programs have been co-designed with universities, health professionals and people over 50 themselves.


To find a class near you visit



Our vision is to lead the way in fall prevention and other healthy ageing initiatives by harnessing expert knowledge and being collaborative in all we do.


We work closely with researchers, policy makers, health practitioners and community service providers in the development and promotion of healthy ageing services and programs with a focus on preventing falls and fall-related injury.


Do you have any news on Falls Prevention or healthy ageing that you want to share with others on the network, or report on a project that is happening in your area. We also welcome suggestions for articles and information you would like to see in this newsletter. Send your news and suggestions to: fallsnetwork@neura.edu.au

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Contact Us:

Telephone +61 2 9399 1063

Email fallsnetwork@neura.edu.au


Our mailing address is:
NSW Falls Prevention Network
Neuroscience Research Australia
PO Box 1165
Randwick NSW 2031


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