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Design of a randomized controlled study of a multi-professional and multidimensional intervention targeting frail elderly people.

Journal article
Authors Katarina Wilhelmson
Anna Dunér
Kajsa Eklund
Gunilla Gosman-Hedström
Staffan Blomberg
Henna Hasson
Helena Gustafsson
Sten Landahl
Synneve Dahlin-Ivanoff
Published in BMC geriatrics
Volume 11
Issue 1
Pages 24
ISSN 1471-2318
Publication year 2011
Published at Institute of Medicine, School of Public Health and Community Medicine
Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Audiology, Logopedics, Occupational Therapy & Physiotherapy
Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Physiology
Department of Social Work
Institute of Medicine
Pages 24
Language en
Links dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2318-11-24
https://gup.ub.gu.se/file/105264
Keywords study protocol, frail elderly, case managent, intervention, randomized controlled study
Subject categories Geriatrics, Public health medicine research areas

Abstract

ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Frail elderly people need an integrated and coordinated care. The two-armed study "Continuum of care for frail elderly people" is a multi-professional and multidimensional intervention for frail community-dwelling elderly people. It was designed to evaluate whether the intervention programme for frail elderly people can reduce the number of visits to hospital, increase satisfaction with health and social care and maintain functional abilities. The implementation process is explored and analysed along with the intervention. In this paper we present the study design, the intervention and the outcome measures as well as the baseline characteristics of the study participants. Methods/design: The study is a randomised two-armed controlled trial with follow ups at 3, 6 and 12 months. The study group includes elderly people who sought care at the emergency ward and discharged to their own homes in the community. Inclusion criteria were 80 years and older or 65 to 79 years with at least one chronic disease and dependent in at least one activity of daily living. Exclusion criteria were acute severely illness with an immediate need of the assessment and treatment by a physician, severe cognitive impairment and palliative care. The intention was that the study group should comprise a representative sample of frail elderly people at a high risk of future health care consumption. The intervention includes an early geriatric assessment, early family support, a case manager in the community with a multi-professional team and the involvement of the elderly people and their relatives in the planning process. DISCUSSION: The design of the study, the randomisation procedure and the protocol meetings were intended to ensure the quality of the study. The implementation of the intervention programme is followed and analysed throughout the whole study, which enables us to generate knowledge on the process of implementing complex interventions. The intervention contributes to early recognition of both the elderly peoples' needs of information, care and rehabilitation and of informal caregivers' need of support and information. This study is expected to show positive effects on frail elderly peoples' health care consumption, functional abilities and satisfaction with health and social care. Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01260493.

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