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Health status of UK care home residents: a cohort study

Gordon, Adam L.; Franklin, Matthew; Bradshaw, Lucy; Logan, Pip; Elliott, Rachel; Gladman, John R.F.


Professor of The Care of Older People

Matthew Franklin

Professor of Rehabilitation Research

Rachel Elliott

Professor of Medicine of Older People


Background: UK care home residents are often poorly served by existing healthcare arrangements. Published descriptions of residents’ health status have been limited by lack of detail and use of data derived from surveys drawn from social, rather than health, care records.

Aim: to describe in detail the health status and healthcare resource use of UK care home residents

Design and setting: a 180-day longitudinal cohort study of 227 residents across 11 UK care homes, 5 nursing and 6 residential, selected to be representative for nursing/residential status and dementia registration.

Method: Barthel index (BI), Mini-mental state examination (MMSE), Neuropsychiatric index (NPI), Mini-nutritional index (MNA), EuroQoL-5D (EQ-5D), 12-item General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12), diagnoses and medications were recorded at baseline and BI, NPI, GHQ-12 and EQ-5D at follow-up after 180 days. National Health Service (NHS) resource use data were collected from databases of local healthcare providers.

Results: out of a total of 323, 227 residents were recruited. The median BI was 9 (IQR: 2.5–15.5), MMSE 13 (4–22) and number of medications 8 (5.5–10.5). The mean number of diagnoses per resident was 6.2 (SD: 4). Thirty per cent were malnourished, 66% had evidence of behavioural disturbance. Residents had contact with the NHS on average once per month.

Conclusion: residents from both residential and nursing settings are dependent, cognitively impaired, have mild frequent behavioural symptoms, multimorbidity, polypharmacy and frequently use NHS resources. Effective care for such a cohort requires broad expertise from multiple disciplines delivered in a co-ordinated and managed way.


Gordon, A. L., Franklin, M., Bradshaw, L., Logan, P., Elliott, R., & Gladman, J. R. (2014). Health status of UK care home residents: a cohort study. Age and Ageing, 43(1), doi:10.1093/ageing/aft077

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 1, 2014
Deposit Date Mar 28, 2014
Publicly Available Date Mar 28, 2014
Journal Age and Ageing
Electronic ISSN 0002-0729
Publisher Oxford University Press (OUP)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 43
Issue 1
Public URL
Publisher URL


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