Implementing Aromatherapy for Falls Reduction in the Inpatient Hospice Population
Falls among the elderly is a health concern affecting multiple patients annually. Hospice patients and those with multiple comorbidities are at the greatest risk of falling and sustaining injuries from falls. Aromatherapy has been used for reducing multiple symptoms as well as for decreasing falls. The practice-focused question explored whether an education program on using aromatherapy for fall prevention would increase knowledge of this intervention for an interdisciplinary group of hospice staff. The design was developed using Knowles's theory of andragogy and Bloom's taxonomy. Thirteen staff members from the same facility participated in the education program. The program was targeted to educate staff who worked with hospice patients about implementing the intervention in their practice. The program was also offered facility-wide to allow all staff the opportunity to increase their knowledge in using the intervention in their fall- reduction programs. Assessment tools including pretest, posttest, and evaluations were completed by all program participants. Using a Likert scale to calculate participant responses, results revealed an increase in knowledge gained from 15% to 60%. The participants rated the program favorably with a mean score of 4.4 to 4.6 out of 5. This program would be beneficial to hospice caregivers and a broader range of staff members including nonhospice nurses, therapists, and providers who are interested in decreasing falls in their patient population. The program would also be of interest to accrediting bodies, hospice, palliative care, oncologic, and geriatric organizations for alternative fall-reduction interventions. Reducing falls will result in a positive social change by decreasing fall-related injuries costs and improving quality at end-of-life.