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Falls Leading To More Senior Deaths In The U.S.

A nationwide increase in falling deaths is raising concern over the quality of care for seniors.

Fatal falls in the U.S. have tripled, according to recent medical journal reports. More than 800 Illinoisans died after a fall from 2008 to 2014.

Peoria County Coroner Jamie Harwood said while falls might not cause immediate death, they can lead to other fatal health problems.

"If you’re over the age of 65 and you suffer a fall that causes any kind of debilitation, you have a greater likelihood of passing away than somebody under that age with other comorbid conditions," he said. 

Harwood says “natural” causes of death like blood clots or pneumonia can be caused by a fall.

He says wearing closed-toe shoes, removing rugs from the home and leaving wide spaces between furniture can help reduce the risk of injury at home.

Copyright 2021 WCBU. To see more, visit WCBU.

Tim Shelley is the News Director at WCBU Peoria Public Radio.
Dana Vollmer is a reporter with WGLT. Dana previously covered the state Capitol for NPR Illinois and Peoria for WCBU.