In Naples, we are living longer, but we fall more!
Just as we learn that we in Naples have the longest life expectancy in the United States — 83.5 years — we also learn that we have the highest injury and death rate in Florida due to falls by seniors.
We have built a community that rates as the best place to live in the U.S. Have we done all of this only to be cut down by unexpected falls that result in injury and death?
Did you know that 1 in 3 seniors fall each year and 20 percent of these are hospitalized? Eleven percent never return home, while 50 percent of those hospitalized pass away within one year. The average death rate in Collier County for seniors who have fallen is 55 percent higher than the rest of Florida.
Falling down is not an inevitable part of aging. Our medical experts tell us there are steps — Smart Steps — that can be taken to reduce the number of serious falls among seniors. It is this finding that caused a coalition of interested civic leaders, nonprofits and health professionals to come together to create a major public education program called Step Smart Collier. Step Smart Collier’s mission is to educate the public on the Smart Steps we can take to get this problem under control.