Check out how we can support our community to stay active, independent and prevent falls...
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On the 1st of March,  @Stay On Your Feet launched the @Remove Hazards campaign which runs until the end of May 2022. This campaign inspires us to learn ways we can support our community to stay active, independent and prevent falls.

In this month's newsletter we are sharing Rodney's story to inspire health and community workers with different solutions to prevent falls. Rodney was very happy to share his own 2 years of development alongside Alice Forrest, his Occupational Therapist.
Rodney and Alice
In 2020, Rodney started experiencing reduced mobility and exacerbation of back and neck pain which can increase the risk of falls within the house and in the community. While Alice will continue to support him moving forward, so far she has been able to provide immediate support in the following areas:

🛌 Adjustable Bed which assists Rodney to complete safer bed transfers and reduces the risk of falls;
💺 Electric Recliner Chair  which also assists Rodney to complete safer transfers but in this case from sitting to stand chair transfers;
🪑Height Adjustable Utility Chair which also assists Rodney to complete safer sitting to stand chair transfers but in this case when Rodney is outside on his veranda;
🪄Long Handled Reacher which prevents Rodney from falling when bending to pick items up;
🛵 Electric Mobility Scooter provides Rodney safe access within the community and reduces the risk of falls on the streets, and whilst out shopping. 
🏠 A U-shaped Rail was installed at the back of the doorsteps giving extra support when getting out to the garden;
🧲 A Magnetic Catch was installed at the back door to stop the door from closing on him;
🔔 PRS Falls Detector Alarm was installed. This automatically triggers a response if the pendant motion detects a fall;
📃 Falls Prevention Education to help Rodney understand the risks and empower him with prevention strategies, including identifying and removing hazards in and around his house,  wearing safe footwear, checking his eyesight and how to use his assistive technology devices.

It is crucial for us to understand the importance of creating safe environments to prevent falls, as well as looking after one's eyesight and feet to prevent falls and promote healthy ageing. Additionally, we can look for solutions to support people experiencing reduced physical, sensory or cognitive capacity to stay active, safe and living independently. Our @Solutions Centre has many solutions available and is open to the broader WA community providing information and consultation free of charge. 
A big thank you to Rodney and Alice
for agreeing to share their journey. 🙏
Falls are a leading cause of hospitalisation for older adults in Australia. Whilst falls prevention efforts have been an important focus of healthcare services, the trend of falls occurring has continued to increase annually over the past decade (approximately by 3% per year for men and 2% per year for women). We recently quizzed our social media followers to focus on this important and growing healthcare issue…
In our poll we had 236 responses, with the most correct responses of any poll to date!! 👏👏 Overall 93% of responders answered our questions correctly! So what does this really mean? 🤔 There has been a focus on education for falls prevention over the past decade, and we have good community awareness (as demonstrated by our poll results) – however the number of falls occurring each year and causing hospitalisation continues to increase, whilst falls continue to be the main cause of injury in those aged over 65 years… is our approach really working?
It could be that our efforts are not working… or that they are, but are just mitigating an even worse progression over this period… 😏
It’s not clear why falls are increasing, whether it be population changes in health and function, changes in our living and lifestyles, changes in prescribing patterns for medications, or other factors . Either way we need to recognise the enormity of the issue and continue to focus on falls prevention in our service provision.
What is clear from the research is that environmental factors continue to play a large role in falls - with 51% of falls in Australia occurring in the home environment (34% of falls on the same level from slipping, tripping and stumbling & 15% of falls from household objects such as chairs, beds, stairs and ladders). With funding continuing to be focused on treating the injury after it’s occurrence and education, our focus as health professionals must shift towards interventions to prevent falls from occurring and interventions which help maintain function and activity in the older population to try and mitigate the risks of falls and reduce the overall trend 😅


This month we took the time to chat a bit more with Ash Dunn, the State Sales Manager from @FOR-DE Group to ask a few questions and get to know him and FOR-DE's team a little better…

1. What did FOR-DE Group look like when it first started 25 years ago? FOR-DE Group was known as Shoprider Australia and was one of the first suppliers of Mobility Scooters into the Australian market, with only 3 staff members in a small office to the largest independent supplier of mobility scooters, that we are now (including 4 independent brands under the For-De Group umbrella), we have a dealer network of 150+ retailers Australia wide.
2. What is the biggest achievement of the team? The expansion of Shoprider Australia into For-De Group was largely due to the growth and expansion of our Redgum and Scooter Xtras Brands which was built solely on the internally developed products through our design team. Our owner Kerry Ford was a large influence on the mobility market in Australia and our biggest achievement would be that after all these years, we are the largest independent and family-owned supplier in the Australian mobility market (and proudly based in WA of course!) 

3. How do you/the team start the day? We'd love to say we have plenty of time for tea and coffee during a morning chat about the current news or sports results, but due to being a supplier Australia Wide, our phones begin ringing from 6:00 am and don't usually stop until 6:00 pm. So we just don't stop! In short, our days start off quite crazy and don't slow down until close. 
4. What is the funniest work story? A few years ago, one of our sales managers (now our General Manager) turned on a scooter in our showroom and proceeded to drive straight into the front glass window of our showroom, this is something we still have a laugh about to this day (and use as a good example to all of our retailers about not keeping scooters at full speed sitting in the showroom, also just in case a customer was to just want to give them a try)

5. Have you had a scooter competition before? If not, we need to organise that 🤣... Who is the current champion? We haven't had any speed competitions since all of our scooters are governed to 10km/h, but I'm sure if we did it would be a close competition between myself and our Operations Manager (affectionately known as "Mr Shoprider") as we are both avid racing fans, but that's a great idea, I'll have to set up a track at the office and get the stopwatch's ready!

Do you have any questions or a problem you want our team of experts to help you solve? We're here to help you! Just reply or send us an email and our team of experienced therapists, suppliers & engineers will work together to find you a solution!

After our Home Modifications Ed. Sessions last month we shared a photo of the the team and Andrej Anastasov has asked about the floor-mounted rail at the Solutions Centre  "You see that rail the lady standing is holding. Can they put that in a bathroom?"

So we reached out to Simon Cochrane who presented the Ed. Session to answer.

There are a variety of floor mounted, wall mounted and drop-down rails that we can install into bathrooms - it depends on a few factors around your clients’ needs and the bathroom environment, such as size, layout, equipment used and bathroom materials as well as the type of rail you are requesting (stainless steel is best in a bathroom to prevent rusting!).

You must also consider the material the rail is being drilled into as there can be issues around placement of rails in walls as well as voiding the waterproofing in bathrooms when drilling into floor and wall coverings, so it is best to work with your contractor to find the best solution that meets both client needs and is suitable for the environment.  If your contractor deems it unsuitable to install a rail into the wall or floor, there are alternatives such as a transfer bench, shower chairs, or even providing education to the client on correct and safe transfer techniques.

You could also consider visiting our Solutions Centre in Malaga for a free consultation and demonstration of the differing rails, and it is also home to a number of other bathroom safety solutions that could be suitable for your bathroom.
Amber Jones
Cura1 Fall Alert Cordless Bed Pad - This is a wireless sensor pad that can be placed on a client's bed to alert to when they have left the bed eg, a fall.
Cura1 Fall Alert Cordless Bed Pad
Peak Handy Bar  - Simple but very effective device that fits quickly into the door striker plate of most cars. Once inserted it becomes a weight-bearing handle to help you get out of your car with more ease.
Peak Handy Bar
Airgo Comfort-Plus Quad Cane
Airgo Comfort-Plus Quad Cane - A walking aid that provides great stability and balance for anyone who needs a little more help indoors or outdoors. The cane’s four-point base carries your weight with ease, whilst it offers improved stability and safety.
Dictus Band -  A sturdy leather ankle support with latex bands to provide dynamic dorsiflexion moment & a superior foot lift to help support foot drop without the need for a bulky orthosis
Dictus Band
Solutions Centre Biggest Morning Tea
Will you help Australia take big steps
toward a cancer-free future?

We are very excited to host for the second year an Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea at the Solutions Centre to support Cancer Council WA and raise vital funds for people impacted by cancer.

Last year our target was to raise $1,000 and together we raised just over $1,500. This year, we would like to ask for your help to go a bit further and we have set a fundraising goal of $2,000.

We would love to have you over for a cuppa and enjoy some of our own MasterChef's recipes and will bring further information about the event in the next few days, so stay tuned!

Your donation will make a real difference.
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