The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy


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The cost of falls

The falls prevention economic model shows how physiotherapy saves money when planning care for older people. Here, you can find and share the evidence for your area. The latest version of the model is now available  with refreshed data from 2015.

Physiotherapy and falls prevention: potential savings

Choose a location to see the potential falls reductions and cost savings.

When you've seen the potential savings from physiotherapy above, download the full falls prevention economic model to access the detailed evidence.

Share the evidence for physiotherapy

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There is a substantial body of evidence demonstrating that physiotherapy and tailored physical exercise programmes reduce the risk and rate of falls in older adults (aged 65+).

Share the evidence for physiotherapy

  • Across the UK every year 280,000 people end up in A&E after a fall, costing the NHS £1.6 billion
  • If everyone 65+ at risk of falling was referred to physiotherapy 160,000 falls would be prevented, saving the NHS £250 million every year
  • Every £1 spent on physiotherapy produces a return on investment of over £4.00
  • Physiotherapy saves money and helps older people to enjoy an active life

The falls prevention economic model

The falls prevention economic model shows in detail how much money could be saved and falls prevented if everyone 65+ identified as at risk of falling was referred to physiotherapy.

It brings together data comes from high-quality sources including the Cochrane Collaboration and the Office for National Statistics.

All falls counted in the model are serious as they result in patients coming to A&E. These falls are then classified as minor, moderate or major:

  • Minor falls in the model are those that don’t require any additional treatment on discharge from A&E 

  • Moderate falls require some follow up treatment in primary care

  • Major falls are falls that result in a hospital admission. These cost an average of £5,000 each time

One important outcome not captured in this model is that physiotherapy will turn some major falls into minor falls.

Those at risk of falling can be simply identified through a number of conventional tests, such as the ‘Timed Up and Go’ (TUAG) test.

This model demonstrates outcomes if the TUAG test is used to identify those at risk.

Planners and commissioners using the model can be confident that the conclusions are likely to be nationally representative, but every local area is different so the model is designed for you to input your own data to take account of existing local pathways.

The latest version of the model has been refreshed with 2015 data and features the following key changes:

  • The model now shows a return on investment of over £4 when £1 is invested in physiotherapy for falls prevention
  • New references have been used to calculate care costs
  • The 60–64 age group has been removed in line with current data recording standards which only record data for the 65+ age ranges

Download the falls prevention economic model

We suggest downloading and saving the spreadsheet so you can alter the assumptions underlying the model on your local computer, saving a personalised version for later use.

For further support or technical assistance email the CSP's professional advice service on


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This resource is funded
by the CSP Charitable Trust


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