IHA case studies

Let’s Get Moving: How Maintaining Functional Mobility Impacts a Decrease in Patient Falls and Wound Prevalence and Increases Patient Satisfaction


Presence St. Joseph's Medical Center's project implemented interventions to maintain patient functional mobility to avoid de-conditioning that occurs during inpatient hospitalization including, but not limited to, hospital-acquired wounds, while maintaining fall prevention best practices. The team utilized the Comprehensive Unit-based Safety Program methodology to engage front-line staff and physicians in identifying safety hazards. The team sought to implement a “continue as home” philosophy, including a new functional screen prompting caregivers to assess the patient’s at-home activity level, as well as creating appropriate alerts to expedite physical therapy consults. Other tools included a new telemetry removal algorithm to facilitate patient showering, an updated safety plan to reflect patient activity and assistance needs, and improved bedside shift reporting.

The result showed a reduction in fall and wound prevalence levels to meet the unit’s goals and a significant increase in patient satisfaction rates. Qualitatively, the new protocol was found to decrease the debilitating effects of hospitalization.


Sarah Bojak, RN, Training and Development Specialist, (815) 725-7133, Sarah.Bojak@PresenceHealth.org

This case study is part of the Illinois Hospital Association's annual quality awards. Each year, IHA recognizes and celebrates the achievements of Illinois hospitals in continually improving and transforming health care in the state. These hospitals are improving health by striving to achieve the Triple Aim--improving the patient experience of care (including quality and satisfaction); improving the health of populations; and reducing the per capita cost of health care.

Award recipients achieve measurable and meaningful progress in providing care that is:

  • Safe
  • Timely
  • Effective
  • Efficient
  • Equitable
  • Patient-centered

(The Institute of Medicine's six aims for improvement.)


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