A recent study published by the journal Pharmacokinetics determined that vitamin D supplementation along with an annual medication review are cost-effective interventions that reduce falls and provide health benefits in older adults living in assisted living facilities.
An estimated one out of three older adults fall each year. In 2013, the costs of medical falls, adjusted for inflation, were $34 billion. Due to the large health care costs, researchers have studied various prevention strategies, including vitamin D supplementation.
In a recent study, researchers sought to determine the cost effective interventions to prevent falls and fall-related injuries in older adults living in assisted living facilities. Data of the effectiveness was derived from two reviews of randomized controlled trials. The interventions were defined as effective if they reduced the risk of injury after a fall or reduced the risk of falling.
Vitamin D supplementation and annual medication reviews were found to be more effective and less costly in comparison to no intervention and hip protectors.
The researchers concluded,
“The model suggests that vitamin D supplementation and medication review are cost-effective interventions that reduce falls, provide health benefits and reduce health care costs in older adults living in [residential aged care facilities].”