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J Am Med Dir Assoc. 2011 Sep;12(7):535-40. doi: 10.1016/j.jamda.2011.01.014. Epub 2011 Mar 16.

Twenty-year trends in dependency in residential aged care in Auckland, New Zealand: a descriptive study.

Author information

1
Freemasons' Department of Geriatric Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, The University of Auckland, New Zealand. michal.boyd@waitematadhb.govt.nz

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To describe changes in aged care residents' dependency over a 20-year period.

DESIGN:

All residents in 1988, 1993, 1998, and 2008 were assessed using the same 23-item functional ability survey.

SETTING:

Residential aged care facilities in Auckland, New Zealand.

PARTICIPANTS:

In 1988 there were 7516 participants (99% response rate), 6972 in 1993 (85% response rate), 5056 in 1998 (65% response rate), and 6828 in 2008 (89% response rate). Data were weighted to accommodate variation in response.

MEASUREMENTS:

A composite dependency score with 5 ordinal levels was derived from a census-type survey reporting mobility, activities of daily living ability, continence, and cognitive function.

RESULTS:

The proportion of "apparently independent" residents decreased from 18% in 1988 to 9% in 1993, 5% in 1998, and 4% in 2008, whereas those "highly dependent" increased from 16% in 1988, to 18% in 1993, 19% in 1998, to 21% in 2008. All functional indicators demonstrated increased dependency over the 20-year period (P < .0001). However, between 1998 and 2008 there were significant increases in dependency for continence, mobility, self-care, and orientation, but no significant changes in memory and behavior.

CONCLUSION:

The increased dependency over 20 years directly affects care requirements for this population.

PMID:
21450250
DOI:
10.1016/j.jamda.2011.01.014
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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