Patient Falls and Teaching Program in Nursing Home: SWOT Analysis


Staff training is an essential part of the responsibilities that are assigned to advanced practice nurses since it provides the opportunity to educate nurses and improve care services. In order to ensure the proper implementation of the educational program for identifying the risk factors that lead to patient falls, it is important to conduct a strengths, weakness, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis. It is expected to reveal the mentioned issues and build the goals and strategies to address weaknesses and threats, thus maximizing the impact of the program.

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Section One: Project Design Foundation


One of the key strong points of a nursing home is that it provides round a clock care for older adult patients, which allows monitoring their health continuously. Accordingly, such a context promotes more attention to risky behaviors that are likely to lead to falls. The other strength is associated with a well-developed reporting system, when nurses are instructed to practice transparency and honesty. The care delivery models adopted in nursing homes imply paying attention to patients’ health, taking into account their physical, psychological, and emotional condition, which is important to detect the risk factors as early as possible. Since the proposed staff training program requires the implementation of knowledge and skills obtained to the practice, the nursing home environment will facilitate this process.


Many staff members working in nursing homes are unaware of the importance of preventing older adult patient falls. This leads to a low level of following prevention strategies and some resistance to the related education. Therefore, one of the goals pursued by the advanced practice nurse should be devoted to encouraging the personnel to learn and use the new skills in working with patients. Also, the care policies can be inflexible and formalized to change the practice for the better and introduce new points to the daily routine of nurses (Pfortmueller, Lindner, & Exadaktylos, 2014).

The low level of interdisciplinary support and collaboration should also be noted as a weakness since this issue directly impacts patient outcomes. For example, a gerontologist, nutritionist, and cardiologist should work as a team to ensure that a patient receives proper medication, physiotherapy, and food. In the course of implementing the proposed program, the educator should try to address these weaknesses.


The fact that nursing homes receive support from the governmental and private organizations presents the opportunity of funding since the operating costs are high. The involvement of the state authorities can also be seen as a promising strategy to attract more attention from the public to the needs of older adult patients. Speaking of possible improvements, it should also be stated that the demand for nursing homes tends to grow, and the proposed program is likely to be relevant to meet the needs of patients and reduce falls (Davis-Ajami, Costa, & Kulik, 2014). The primary idea of the target institution is to promote the independent life of clients to the most possible extent. Therefore, the staff training is a viable solution that would help to address additional care expenditure and efforts, which is beneficial both for nursing homes and patients.


The fear of reporting can be regarded as the first threat that is characterized by the reluctance of the staff to identify the factors of potential falls. This can be associated with the standard way of reporting adopted in the facility, which needs to be changed to make sure that the program is used effectively. At the same time, the practice change can lead to a significant increase in costs related to the assisted living, which creates the barriers to altering the ways the care services are provided (Vlaeyen et al., 2015).

As a result, the patients and their families may reconsider their decision to cooperate with the nursing home, and it can be much more difficult to attract more customers. In terms of care ethics and safety, the failure of nurses to comply with the principles proposed by the new program may cause care errors and negative patient experience.

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Section Two: Addressing the Issue Through Team Collaboration

To collect the required information and complete the above SWOT analysis, it was beneficial to contact the administration and discuss the general tendencies of the nursing home. In particular, the topics of staff skills and knowledge, the incidence and prevalence of patient falls, financial matters, and the resources available were clarified. In addition, nurses and nursing assistants were interviewed with the aim of understanding their current perceptions of older adult patient falls as well as any changes in their practice.

It was revealed that some of the staff members have doubts about the effectiveness of such training sessions, which means that they may be resistant. It should also be mentioned that in terms of the chronic care model (CCM), some patents were interviewed after expressing their consent to contribute to the project. According to Garcia, Harrison, and Goodwin (2016), the involvement of patients in the process of need identification and goal setting promotes the patient-centered approach. Based on the information received from these stakeholders, the SWOT analysis was designed as a systematic presentation of the key issues that are characteristic of the nursing home.

For the practicum practice change project, a team of stakeholders should be created to ensure that knowledge is disseminated and acquired appropriately, and any mistakes are corrected timely. Administrators will be asked to prepare practice change policies and announce the need to adopt new strategies, while nurses and nurse assistants will compose the target audience for training sessions. It seems to be advantageous to attract the local authorities and representatives of other nursing homes to link the process of education to the current trends emerging in the health care field.

Section Three: Plan the Creation of the Operational Objectives, Goals, and Specific Strategies to Address the Practicum Selected Issue

The goal of the staff training program is to achieve greater awareness in nurses of risk factors that lead to patient falls. In operational terms, the objectives can be formulated As follows: to provide relevant training, explain the importance of prevention, and master the strategies for fall avoidance. The first strategy is paying attention to patients’ walking, posture, vertigo, and communication changes. Gait problems, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases, as well as the history of falls should be considered in terms of the second strategy. Along with the identification of risk factors, the staff is expected to create the physical and psychological environment that reduces the incidence of falls.

In Summary

To conclude, the SWOT analysis shows that the nursing home presents such strengths as the continuous monitoring and well-designed reporting system, while the weaknesses are the expected resistance to learning and unawareness of fall prevention. This paper also clarifies the stakeholders who were interviewed to collect information, including administrators, nurses, nurse assistants, and patients. To guide the implementation of the proposed practicum change project, goals, objectives, and strategies were identified.


Davis-Ajami, M. L., Costa, L., & Kulik, S. (2014). Gap analysis: Synergies and opportunities for effective nursing leadership. Nursing Economics, 32(1), 17-25.

Garcia, T. J., Harrison, T. C., & Goodwin, J. S. (2016). Nursing home stakeholder views of resident involvement in medical care decisions. Qualitative Health Research, 26(5), 712-728.

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Pfortmueller, C. A., Lindner, G., & Exadaktylos, A. K. (2014). Reducing fall risk in the elderly: Risk factors and fall prevention, a systematic review. Minerva Med, 105(4), 275-281.

Vlaeyen, E., Coussement, J., Leysens, G., Van der Elst, E., Delbaere, K., Cambier, D.,… Dejaeger, E. (2015). Characteristics and effectiveness of fall prevention programs in nursing homes: A systematic review and meta‐analysis of randomized controlled trials. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, 63(2), 211-221.


SWOT Analysis

  1. 24/7 care and monitoring
  2. Well-developed reporting system
  3. Comprehensive care delivery model
  4. Linking theory and practice
  1. Unawareness of the needs to prevent falls
  2. Resistance to learning
  3. Inflexible and formalized policies
  1. Support from governmental and private organizations
  2. Demand for nursing homes tends to grow
  3. Openness to change
  1. Fear of reporting
  2. Additional costs
  3. Failure to meet ethical and safety considerations
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