2020 WA Falls Report: Released

September 1, 2020

Injury Matters, in partnership with the WA Department of Health, has launched the 2020 Western Australian Falls Report. The Report highlights the significant incidence of falls-related fatalities, hospitalisations, and emergency department attendances in the state.

Falls are a significant public health issue affecting Western Australian families and the economy, with falls ranking as the leading cause of injury fatalities and injury hospitalisations in WA. The Report shows someone died every 26 hours in WA due to a falls-related injury in 2017; while older adults and those in regional WA remain overrepresented in falls injury statistics.

Injury Matters Chief Executive, Sandy Lukjanowski said, “This report demonstrates that falls continue to have large impact on the WA community. Behind every number in this Report are real people who have had their lives impacted by a fall.”

“1 in 3 people over the age of 65 have a fall each year, with some resulting in serious injury and hospitalisation, but falls are preventable – they don’t just happen,” Ms Lukjanowski said.

Injury Matters delivers the Stay On Your Feet® program, which aims to reduce falls and fall related injuries while encouraging confidence in independent living.

The Stay On Your Feet® Move Improve Remove campaigns provide information, resources, and education to on how to keep active and alert to prevent slips, trips and falls. To prevent falls: move your body, improve your health and remove hazards.

Key findings, in Western Australia:

  • Every 26 hours someone died due to a falls-related injury in 2017.
  • Every 19 minutes someone was admitted to hospital due to a falls-related injury in 2018.
  • Every 12 minutes someone presented to the emergency department due to a falls-related injury in 2018.
  • 329 falls-related fatalities in 2017.
  • 27,327 falls-related hospitalisations in 2018.
  • Individuals aged 80 years and over experience the highest rate of falls-related injuries.
  • Females experienced a higher rate of falls-related hospitalisations and emergency department attendances in 2018.
  • The Kimberley region had the highest of rate of falls-related hospitalisations in 2018.
  • 42,384 falls-related emergency department presentations in 2018.
  • $215.2 million was paid in lost-time compensation claims in 2018 due to a workplace fall.