Title: Falls - costs, numbers and links with visual impairment

Author: Tammy Boyce; Publisher: RNIB; Year of publication: 2011

Background

This briefing paper considers the evidence concerning the number and cost of falls attributed to partial sightedness and blindness.

Key findings

The number of falls is increasing, and a large body of research examines the causes of these falls. However, the role of partial sightedness and blindness as a cause of falls is studied less, and so is less well understood. The full financial cost of these falls to the NHS and social care has not been calculated, however it is conservatively estimated at £25 million per year. Research has used a complicated formula involving relative risk to estimate the number of falls attributed to partial sightedness and blindness, and a modified version of this formula has been created to make it easier for agencies to calculate the number of falls in their areas.