Community care in Europe: The aged in home care project (AdHOC)

Carpenter, G. Iain and Gambassi, Giovanni and Topinkova, Eva (2004) Community care in Europe: The aged in home care project (AdHOC). Aging Clinical and Experimental Research, 16 . pp. 259-269. ISSN 1594-0667 . (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Background and aims: Community care for older people is increasing dramatically in most European countries as the preferred option to hospital andlong-term care. While there has been a rapid expansion in Evidence-Based Medicine, apart from studies of specific interventions such as home visiting and hospital at home (specialist visits or hospital services provided to people in their own homes in the community), there is little evidence of characteristics of the recipients of community care services or the organisation of services that produce the best outcomes for them and their informal carers. The AdHOC Study was designed to compare outcomes of different models of community care using a structured comparison of services and a comprehensive standardised assessment instrument across 11 European countries. This paper describes the study and baseline data. Methods: 4,500 people 65 years and older already receiving home care services within the urban areas selected in each country were randomly sampled. They were assessed with the MDS-HC (Minimum Data Set-Home Care) instrument, containing over 300 items, including socio-demographic, physical and cognitive characteristics of patients as well as medical diagnoses and medications received. These data were linked to information on the setting, services structures and services utilization, including use of hospital and long-term care. After baseline assessment, patients were re-evaluated at 6 months with an abbreviated version of the instrument, and then at the end of one year. Data collection was performed by specially-trained personnel. In this paper, socio-demographics, physical and cognitive function and provision of hours of formal care are compared between countries at baseline. Results: The final study sample comprised 3,785 patients; mean age was 82±7.2 years, 74.2% were females. Marital and living status reflected close family relationships in southern Europe relative to Nordic countries, where 5 times as many patients live alone. Recipients of community care in France and Italy are characterised by very high physical and cognitive impairment compared with those in northern Europe, who have comparatively little impairment in Activities of Daily Living and cognitive function. The provision of formal care to people with similar dependency varies extremely widely with very little formal care in Italy and more than double the average across all levels of dependency in the UK. Conclusions: The AdHOC study, by virtue of the use of a common comprehensive standardised assessment instrument, is a unique tool in examining older recipients of community care services in European countries and their widely varied organisation. The extreme differences seen in dependency and hours of care illustrate the probable contribution the study will make to developing an evidence based on the structure, quantity and targeting of community care, which will have major policy implications.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research > Centre for Health Services Studies
Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research
Depositing User: Samantha Osborne
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2007 18:26
Last Modified: 14 May 2014 09:00
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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