Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Can we change the fall risk or intervention icons to fit the needs of our hospital?
  2. We ask that you do not alter the tool without our permission, since the tool is our property and all of its components are evidence based. We recommend that first, you implement the tool as it is. The language for risk/interventions and icons were rigorously validated with patients and clinical staff. The Fall TIPS tool was iteratively refined until stakeholders felt it was complete and simple to understand.

  3. Can hospitals not using the Morse Fall Scale implement Fall TIPS?
  4. Yes. The Fall TIPS tool is based off the Morse Fall Scale (MFS) because there is the most evidence behind its use in general medical and surgical settings. Studies by Oliver et al show that the MFS is also the only fall risk assessment to address all six common predictors of inpatient falls. The suggested workflow is to complete the fall risk assessment at the bedside with the patients (first in the EHR using your hospital’s fall risk assessment, then using the laminated Fall TIPS poster). This workflow does not burden staff because the fall risk factors align across the most common fall risk assessments and the MFS, as show in the table below:

  5. Who do I need permission from to use the Fall TIPS tool?
  6. The Fall TIPS tool is free of charge to use and is available on the resources page of our website. If you require a formal letter, Dr. Patricia Dykes can officially grant permission.

  7. Do I need permission to use the Morse Fall Scale?
  8. You do not need copyright permission to use the Morse Fall Scale screening tool since it’s available in the public domain. However, if you wanted to change anything, you would have to contact Dr. Morse at Univ of Utah.

  9. What care settings/patient populations is the Fall TIPS tool used in?
  10. While the tool was originally developed and validated for use in general medical/surgical settings, our collaborators are working on adapting the tool for use in psychiatry, rehabilitation, and long-term care settings. The tool is also being used in some intensive care units, emergency departments, and at VA hospitals. If you are interested in implementing in one of these settings, contact us and we would be happy to connect you with one of our collaborators. The tool was not designed for use in pediatric settings, as this requires a completely different fall risk assessment.

More questions? Contact PHSFallTIPS@partners.org