Jim McGinty

Jim McGinty

Attorney General; Minister for Health; Electoral Affairs

    Delivering a healthy WA - campaign to keep seniors on their feet

    6/05/2005 12:00 AM

    The State Government has launched a campaign in an effort to prevent more than 75,000 senior citizens injuring themselves in falls.

    Health Minister Jim McGinty said 6,000 seniors were hospitalised each year as a result of a serious fall but the majority of people aged 60 and over did not consider falling a health issue.

    Launching the Stay On Your Feet WA™ falls prevention campaign, Mr McGinty said new Department of Health research showed that almost 70 per cent of seniors believed it was unlikely they would injure themselves in a fall.

    “One in four Western Australian seniors will fall each year, with a third of those requiring medical attention due to injury,” he said.

    “Seniors, their families and friends should recognise the importance of this health issue and more importantly, that something can be done about it.

    “People aged 60 and over need to realise that falls are preventable and that they can take action to reduce their risk.”

    The Stay On Your Feet WA™ campaign aims to help seniors maintain a healthy and active life by highlighting simple preventive measures that will assist them to stay on their feet.

    The Minister said prevention campaigns were a priority for the Gallop Government and programs such as Stay On Your Feet WA™ would help reduce the burden on the State’s health system.

    “We want to keep seniors out of our hospital emergency departments with injuries that could have otherwise been prevented,” he said.

    “For seniors, falls can have shattering consequences on their mobility, independence and lifestyle.

    “For the health system, falls significantly contribute to rising health costs - by 2021 the cost of seniors’ falls is forecast to more than double the current annual figure of $83million.”

    The Stay On Your Feet WA™ campaign promotes nine steps to stay on your feet:
    • be active;
    • manage your medicines;
    • manage your health;
    • improve your balance;
    • walk tall;
    • foot care and safe footwear;
    • regularly check your eyesight;
    • eat well for life; and
    • identify, remove and report hazards.
    The State-wide campaign co-funded by the Office of Seniors’ Interests and Volunteering starts Sunday, May 8 and includes television and press advertising, direct mail, public relations, information resources, community activities and a website http://www.stayonyourfeet.com.au

    Minister's office: 9220 5000