Safety risks among frail older people living at home in the Netherlands – A cross-sectional study in a routine primary care sample

Manon Lette*, Annerieke Stoop, Giel Nijpels, Caroline Baan, Simone de Bruin, Hein van Hout

*Corresponding author for this work

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Frail older people face a range of problems and risks that could undermine their ability to live safely at home. A comprehensive overview of these risks, from a multidimensional perspective, is currently lacking. This study aims to examine the prevalence of risks in multiple domains of life among frail older people living at home. We used cross-sectional data from 824 people aged 65 years and older, who received a comprehensive geriatric assessment (the interRAI Home Care [interRAI-HC]) between 2014 and 2018, as part of routine care from 25 general practices in the region of West-Friesland, the Netherlands. The interRAI-HC identifies amenable risks related to people's clinical conditions, functioning, lifestyle and behaviour, and social and physical environment. Descriptive statistics were used to examine population characteristics (age, gender, marital status, living arrangements and presence of chronic conditions) and prevalence of risks. Most common risks were related to people's clinical conditions (i.e cardio-respiratory health, urinary incontinence, pain), functioning (i.e. limitations in instrumental activities of daily living and mood) and social environment (i.e. limitations in informal care and social functioning). More than 80% of frail older people faced multiple risks, and often on multiple domains of life simultaneously. People experiencing multiple risks per person, and on multiple domains simultaneously, were more often widowed and living alone. The multidimensional character of risks among frail older people living at home implies that an integrated approach to care, comprising both health and social care, is necessary. Insight in the prevalence of these risks can give direction to care allocation decisions.

Original languageEnglish
JournalHealth and Social Care in the Community
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2020

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