LINDSBORG — The Lindsborg Community Hospital will be offering Stepping On, a 7-week workshop designed to assist older adults in taking control of their risk of falling. Program participants will meet from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 19 through Oct. 31 at the Lindsborg Community Hospital, 605 W. Lincoln St. in Lindsborg.

To register, call Cynthia Woodard at 785-227-3308 extension 238, or go to www.lindsborghospital.org for a brochure and application. Class size is limited and there is no charge for the program.

Falls are the leading cause of injury and injury-related deaths among those aged 65 years and older. Older adults are hospitalized for fall-related injuries five times more often than they are for injuries from other causes. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, one in three adults aged 65 and older falls each year, and 20-30 percent suffer moderate to severe injuries that make it difficult for them to get around or live independently or cause early death.

Annually, emergency departments treat about 2.5 million nonfatal fall injuries among older adults; more than 30 percent, or about 734,000 of these patients have to be hospitalized with fractures, soft tissue injuries or head injuries. In 2015, the direct medical costs of older adult falls, adjusted for inflation, were $31 billion. As the population ages, both the number of falls and the costs to treat fall injuries are likely to increase.

This will be the fifth session offered by the Lindsborg Community Hospital to help prevent and combat falls in the Smoky Valley. The small-group program is designed to reduce falls and build confidence in older adults.

Stepping On is based on a program first implemented in Australia. The Australian program demonstrated a 31 percent reduction in falls; the American version adapted by the Wisconsin Institute of Healthy Aging is achieving similar results.

The Stepping On program will empower older adults who have fallen or who have a fear of falling. Designed to assist older adults to take control of their falls risk, participants will learn to recognize and carry out health behaviors, thereby reducing their risk. The program includes both a group workshop setting and individualized follow-up.

Two-hour sessions are conducted on Tuesdays once a week for seven weeks, and will include guest experts in areas of vision, medications, and exercise. The program covers a range of topics including falls and risk, home hazards, safe footwear and clothing, strength and balance exercise, and vision as it relates to falls, among other topics.

Stepping On is intended for older adults who live in their own homes or apartments. It is not considered for use in nursing homes or assisted living facilities.

The workshop is targeted for those who:

— Live in a home or apartment;

— Have fallen in the past year or have a fear of falling

— Are able to walk without the help of another person and don’t use a walker, scooter, or wheelchair most of the time for indoor mobility

—Are cognitively intact (able to fill out forms follow written and verbal directions and interact in a group setting)

To register, call Cynthia Woodard at 785-227-3308. Ext 238, or go to www.lindsborghospital.org for a brochure and application. Class size is limited and there is no charge for the program.