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Advisor: Albert Crawford, Jefferson College of Population Health, Jefferson University, Philadelphia, PA


Each year, falls contribute to the morbidity and mortality of older adults. The factors that contribute to a fall are multi-disciplinary, and, as such, are a notable public health concern. The Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), a project of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is a system of health-related telephone surveys that collect data on the incidence of falls and many of the risk factors that have been found to contribute to one’s likelihood of incurring a fall. Given the large scale and high regard within the research community of the BRFSS survey system, this database lent for optimal investigation of a possible association between the reporting of having an accidental fall and marital status. The results have offered a quantifiable contribution to the literature, stating that the likelihood of incurring a fall is associated with marital status, income, age, and sex. Future discussions about fall prevention can now demonstrate a quantifiable association that marriage offers a protective means of fall prevention – highlighting the value of companionship in public health.

Presentation: 3:59