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Ann Clin Psychiatry. 1999 Sep;11(3):109-12.

Outcome of psychogeriatric intervention in an old-age home: a 3 years follow-up study.

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  • 1Abarbanel Mental Health Center and the Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Israel.


Psychogeriatrics and especially psychiatric services in nursing and old-age homes are sorely lacking in research. Four years ago we developed and implemented a model for service delivery for old-age homes within our hospitals' catchment area. In the first year of operation 48 of 373 residents (13%) were evaluated and treated by a psychogeriatrician. The aim of the present study was to evaluate outcome of these patients three years later. All patients and medical records were re-assessed. During the three-year period 16/48 subjects (33.3%) passed away; of these half were previously diagnosed as suffering from a major depressive episode. None of the subjects who died had attempted suicide. Following a preliminary diagnosis of affective spectrum disorder, 4/48 patients (8.3%) were re-diagnosed at follow up as suffering from dementia. Full or partial remission of the original symptomatology was achieved in 18/32 surviving subjects (50.7%); mostly depressed or anxious patients. We conclude that although mortality rate among elderly psychiatric patients is high persistent interventions lead to successful remission in the majority of patients.

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