, Volume 13, Issue 8, pp 679-683
Date: 07 Oct 2009

Descriptive study of nursing home residents from the REHPA network

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Abstract

Introduction

To date, very little research has been carried out in nursing homes and it is difficult to make recommendations for quality of care that are based on actual data. The Réseau de Recherche en Etablissement d’Hébergement pour Personnes Agées (REHPA) is a functional network established in collaboration between the geriatric department of Toulouse University Hospital and 240 nursing homes with the aim of compensating for the lack of evidence-based recommendations and of enhancing research.

Materials and methods

A cross-sectional observational study was conducted between January and March 2008. The number of residents included (randomly selected by birth date) depended on the total number of residents of the facility. Demography, medical and drug history, disabilities and care practices were assessed by geriatrician.

Results

We report the findings in 4896 residents of 240 nursing homes. Residents were 73.9% women, mean age 85.7 ± 8.8 years, mean weight 61.9 ± 14.8 kg, with a mean ADL score of 2.8 ± 2.1. Dementia was diagnosed in 43.5% (of whom only 50.9% were treated), 19.6% showed aggressive behaviours, 10.8% exhibited disruptive vocalization and 10.9% were wanderers, 27.4% were treated with antipsychotic medications, 54.4% had hypertension, 8.7% had diabetes, 14.8% were osteoporotic, 4.1% had fallen during the previous week, 37.9% were in pain and 19.8% had lost weight. The mean Charlson index score was 1.6 ± 1.4. Finally, 13.5% had been admitted to hospital within the previous three months.

Conclusion

The survey identifies specific issues in order to target future research in the nursing home setting.