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Age Ageing. 2017 Sep 1;46(5):801-806. doi: 10.1093/ageing/afx081.

Frailty status at admission to hospital predicts multiple adverse outcomes.

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Centre for Research in Geriatric Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
Clinical Trials and Biostatistics Unit, QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute, Herston, Queensland, Australia.
Department of Medicine, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.



frailty is proposed as a summative measure of health status and marker of individual vulnerability. We aimed to investigate the discriminative capacity of a frailty index (FI) derived from interRAI Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment for Acute Care (AC) in relation to multiple adverse inpatient outcomes.


in this prospective cohort study, an FI was derived for 1,418 patients ≥70 years across 11 hospitals in Australia. The interRAI-AC was administered at admission and discharge by trained nurses, who also screened patients daily for geriatric syndromes.


in adjusted logistic regression models an increase of 0.1 in FI was significantly associated with increased likelihood of length of stay >28 days (odds ratio [OR]: 1.29 [1.10-1.52]), new discharge to residential aged care (OR: 1.31 [1.10-1.57]), in-hospital falls (OR: 1.29 [1.10-1.50]), delirium (OR: 2.34 [2.08-2.63]), pressure ulcer incidence (OR: 1.51 [1.23-1.87]) and inpatient mortality (OR: 2.01 [1.66-2.42]). For each of these adverse outcomes, the cut-point at which optimal sensitivity and specificity occurred was for an FI > 0.40. Specificity was higher than sensitivity with positive predictive values of 7-52% and negative predictive values of 88-98%. FI-AC was not significantly associated with readmissions to hospital.


the interRAI-AC can be used to derive a single score that predicts multiple adverse outcomes in older inpatients. A score of ≤0.40 can well discriminate patients who are unlikely to die or experience a geriatric syndrome. Whether the FI-AC can result in management decisions that improve outcomes requires further study.


delirium; electronic health records; frail older people; inpatients

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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