Search tips
Search criteria

Results 1-25 (933004)

Clipboard (0)

Related Articles

1.  Resident-to-Resident Aggression in Nursing Homes: Results from a Qualitative Event Reconstruction Study 
The Gerontologist  2011;52(1):24-33.
Despite its prevalence and negative consequences, research on elder abuse has rarely considered resident-to-resident aggression (RRA) in nursing homes. This study employed a qualitative event reconstruction methodology to identify the major forms of RRA that occur in nursing homes.
Design and methods:
Events of RRA were identified within a 2-week period in all units (n = 53) in nursing homes located in New York City. Narrative reconstructions were created for each event based on information from residents and staff who were involved as well as other sources. The event reconstructions were analyzed using qualitative methods to identify common features of RRA events.
Analysis of the 122 event reconstructions identified 13 major forms of RRA, grouped under five themes. The resulting framework demonstrated the heterogeneity of types of RRA, the importance of considering personal, environmental, and triggering factors, and the potential emotional and physical harm to residents.
These results suggest the need for person-centered and environmental interventions to reduce RRA, as well as for further research on the topic.
PMCID: PMC3265555  PMID: 22048811
Abuse/neglect; Behavior; Long-term care; Aggression
2.  Resident-to-Resident Aggression in Long-Term Care Facilities: An Understudied Problem 
Resident-to-resident aggression (RRA) between long-term care residents includes negative and aggressive physical, sexual, or verbal interactions that in a community setting would likely be construed as unwelcome and have high potential to cause physical or psychological distress in the recipient. Although this problem potentially has high incidence and prevalence and serious consequences for aggressors and victims, it has received little direct attention from researchers to date. This article reviews the limited available literature on this topic as well as relevant research from related areas including: resident violence toward nursing home staff, aggressive behaviors by elderly persons, and community elder abuse. We present hypothesized risk factors for aggressor, victim, and nursing home environment, including issues surrounding cognitive impairment. We discuss methodological challenges to studying RRA and offer suggestions for future research. Finally, we describe the importance of designing effective interventions, despite the lack currently available, and suggest potential areas of future research.
PMCID: PMC2741635  PMID: 19750126
aggressive behavior; nursing homes; dementia; epidemiology
3.  Staffing levels in not-for-profit and for-profit long-term care facilities: Does type of ownership matter? 
Currently there is a lot of debate about the advantages and disadvantages of for-profit health care delivery. We examined staffing ratios for direct-care and support staff in publicly funded not-for-profit and for-profit nursing homes in British Columbia.
We obtained staffing data for 167 long-term care facilities and linked these to the type of facility and ownership of the facility. All staff were members of the same bargaining association and received identical wages in both not-for-profit and for-profit facilities. Similar public funding is provided to both types of facilities, although the amounts vary by the level of functional dependence of the residents. We compared the mean number of hours per resident-day provided by direct-care staff (registered nurses, licensed practical nurses and resident care aides) and support staff (housekeeping, dietary and laundry staff) in not-for-profit versus for-profit facilities, after adjusting for facility size (number of beds) and level of care.
The nursing homes included in our study comprised 76% of all such facilities in the province. Of the 167 nursing homes examined, 109 (65%) were not-for-profit and 58 (35%) were for-profit; 24% of the for-profit homes were part of a chain, and the remaining homes were owned by a single operator. The mean number of hours per resident-day was higher in the not-for-profit facilities than in the for-profit facilities for both direct-care and support staff and for all facility levels of care. Compared with for-profit ownership, not-for-profit status was associated with an estimated 0.34 more hours per resident-day (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.18–0.49, p < 0.001) provided by direct-care staff and 0.23 more hours per resident-day (95% CI 0.15–0.30, p < 0.001) provided by support staff.
Not-for-profit facility ownership is associated with higher staffing levels. This finding suggests that public money used to provide care to frail eldery people purchases significantly fewer direct-care and support staff hours per resident-day in for-profit long-term care facilities than in not-for-profit facilities.
PMCID: PMC550634  PMID: 15738489
Journal of advanced nursing  2005;49(4):377-386.
While various efforts have described the ramifications of staff-resident interactions in nursing homes, few studies identify the factors that potentially influence staff members' perceptions of residents in multiple long-term care settings.
This paper reports a study to determine how facility-, resident-, family-, and staff-level indicators are empirically associated with staff members' perceptions of residents in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and family care homes.
The participants were 41 care staff located in 5 nursing homes, 5 assisted living facilities, and 16 family care homes randomly selected in the United States of America. Face-to-face and telephone interviews were conducted with care staff, residents in their care, family members of residents, and administrators of participating facilities. Telephone interviews measured staff perceptions of residents on two domains: cohesion (perceived feelings of closeness between staff and residents) and knowledge of residents' personal lives and care needs.
Regression models found that staff who were married, reported more positive attitudes toward family members, and worked in smaller facilities reported greater staff-resident cohesion. In addition, staff who cared for a higher percentage of residents with learning difficulties indicated greater knowledge of residents.
The findings emphasize the need to consider elements of staff-family relationships when considering staff perceptions of residents. The results also imply that clinical interventions designed to enhance social relationships in nursing homes can be extended across the long-term care landscape to positively influence the staff-resident-family triad.
PMCID: PMC2365472  PMID: 15701152
Long-term care; Residential homes; staff; residents; relatives; nursing
5.  Resident-Directed Long-Term Care: Staff Provision of Choice During Morning Care 
The Gerontologist  2011;51(6):867-875.
Purpose: To develop an observational protocol to assess the quality of staff–resident communication relevant to choice and describe staff–resident interactions as preliminary evidence of the usefulness of the tool to assess current nursing home practices related to offering choice during morning care provision. Design and Methods: This study included 73 long-stay residents in 2 facilities. Research staff conducted observations for 4 consecutive morning hours during targeted care activities (transfer out of bed, incontinence, dressing, and dining location). Observations were conducted weekly for 12 consecutive weeks. Staff–resident interactions were measured related to staff offers of choice and residents’ responses. Results: Interrater agreement was achieved for measures of staff offers of choice (kappa = .83, p < .001), type of choice provided (kappa = .75, p < .001), and resident requests related to choice (kappa = .72, p < .001). Observations over 2,766 care episodes during 4 aspects of morning care showed that staff offered residents choice during 18% of the episodes. Most observations (70%) were coded as staff offering “no choice.” Implications: Nursing home staff can use a simplified version of this standardized observational tool to reliably measure staff–resident interactions related to choice during morning care provision as a first step toward improving resident-directed care practice.
PMCID: PMC3220665  PMID: 21719629
Long-term care; Quality of care; Measurement; Quality of life; Assessment of conditions/people; Consumer-directed care
6.  Back disorders and lumbar load in nursing staff in geriatric care: a comparison of home-based care and nursing homes 
Back pain is one of the most frequent complaints in the nursing profession. Thus, the 12-month prevalence of pain in the lumbar spine in nursing staff is as high as 76%. Only a few representative studies have assessed the prevalence rates of back pain and its risk factors among nursing staff in nursing homes in comparison to staff in home-based care facilities. The present study accordingly investigates the prevalence in the lumbar and cervical spine and determines the physical workload to lifting and caring in geriatric care.
1390 health care workers in nursing homes and home care participated in this cross sectional survey. The nursing staff members were examined by occupational physicians according to the principals of the multistep diagnosis of musculoskeletal disorders. Occupational exposure to daily care activities with patient transfers was measured by a standardised questionnaire. The lumbar load was calculated with the Mainz-Dortmund dose model. Information on ergonomic conditions were recorded from the management of the nursing homes. Comparisons of all outcome variables were made between both care settings.
Complete documentation, including the findings from the occupational physicians and the questionnaire, was available for 41%. Staff in nursing homes had more often positive orthopaedic findings than staff in home care. At the same time the values calculated for lumbar load were found to be significant higher in staff in nursing homes than in home-based care: 45% vs. 6% were above the reference value. Nursing homes were well equipped with technical lifting aids, though their provision with assistive advices is unsatisfactory. Situation in home care seems worse, especially as the staff often has to get by without assistance.
Future interventions should focus on counteracting work-related lumbar load among staff in nursing homes. Equipment and training in handling of assistive devices should be improved especially for staff working in home care.
PMCID: PMC2801493  PMID: 20003284
7.  R-RAS2 overexpression in tumors of the human central nervous system 
Molecular Cancer  2013;12:127.
Malignant tumors of the central nervous system (CNS) are the 10th most frequent cause of cancer mortality. Despite the strong malignancy of some such tumors, oncogenic mutations are rarely found in classic members of the RAS family of small GTPases. This raises the question as to whether other RAS family members may be affected in CNS tumors, excessively activating RAS pathways. The RAS-related subfamily of GTPases is that which is most closely related to classical Ras and it currently contains 3 members: RRAS, RRAS2 and RRAS3. While R-RAS and R-RAS2 are expressed ubiquitously, R-RAS3 expression is restricted to the CNS. Significantly, both wild type and mutated RRAS2 (also known as TC21) are overexpressed in human carcinomas of the oral cavity, esophagus, stomach, skin and breast, as well as in lymphomas. Hence, we analyzed the expression of R-RAS2 mRNA and protein in a wide variety of human CNS tumors and we found the R-RAS2 protein to be overexpressed in all of the 90 CNS cancer samples studied, including glioblastomas, astrocytomas and oligodendrogliomas. However, R-Ras2 was more strongly expressed in low grade (World Health Organization grades I-II) rather than high grade (grades III-IV) tumors, suggesting that R-RAS2 is overexpressed in the early stages of malignancy. Indeed, R-RAS2 overexpression was evident in pre-malignant hyperplasias, both at the mRNA and protein levels. Nevertheless, such dramatic changes in expression were not evident for the other two subfamily members, which implies that RRAS2 is the main factor triggering neural transformation.
PMCID: PMC3900289  PMID: 24148564
RAS family proteins; R-RAS2; CNS tumors; TC21
8.  Verbal and Physical Aggression Directed at Nursing Home Staff by Residents 
Little research has been conducted on aggression directed at staff by nursing home residents.
To estimate the prevalence of resident-to-staff aggression (RSA) over a 2-week period.
Prevalent cohort study.
Large urban nursing homes.
Population-based sample of 1,552 residents (80 % of eligible residents) and 282 certified nursing assistants.
Main Outcome Measures
Measures of resident characteristics and staff reports of physical, verbal, or sexual behaviors directed at staff by residents.
The staff response rate was 89 %. Staff reported that 15.6 % of residents directed aggressive behaviors toward them (2.8 % physical, 7.5 % verbal, 0.5 % sexual, and 4.8 % both verbal and physical). The most commonly reported type was verbal (12.4 %), particularly screaming at the certified nursing assistant (9.0 % of residents). Overall, physical aggression toward staff was reported for 7.6 % of residents, the most common being hitting (3.9 % of residents). Aggressive behaviors occurred most commonly in resident rooms (77.2 %) and in the morning (84.3 %), typically during the provision of morning care. In a logistic regression model, three clinical factors were significantly associated with resident-to-staff aggression: greater disordered behavior (OR = 6.48, 95 % CI: 4.55, 9.21), affective disturbance (OR = 2.29, 95 % CI: 1.68, 3.13), and need for activities of daily living morning assistance (OR = 2.16, 95 % CI: 1.53, 3.05). Hispanic (as contrasted with White) residents were less likely to be identified as aggressors toward staff (OR = 0.57, 95 % CI: 0.36, 0.91).
Resident-to-staff aggression in nursing homes is common, particularly during morning care. A variety of demographic and clinical factors was associated with resident-to-staff aggression; this could serve as the basis for evidence-based interventions. Because RSA may negatively affect the quality of care, resident and staff safety, and staff job satisfaction and turnover, further research is needed to understand its causes and consequences and to develop interventions to mitigate its potential impact.
PMCID: PMC3631060  PMID: 23225256
nursing home; dementia-related behaviors; elder abuse; staff mistreatment
9.  Nursing home staff’s views on residents’ dignity: a qualitative interview study 
Maintaining dignity is an important element of end-of-life care and also of the care given in nursing homes. Factors influencing personal dignity have been studied from both nursing home residents’ and staff’s perspective. Little is however known about the way nursing home staff perceive and promote the personal dignity of individual residents in daily practice, or about staff’s experiences with preserving dignity within the nursing home. The aim of this study is to gain more insight in this.
A qualitative descriptive interview study was designed, in which in-depth interviews were performed with 13 physicians and 15 nurses. They expressed their views on the personal dignity of 30 recently admitted nursing home residents on the general medical wards of four nursing homes in The Netherlands. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed following the principles of thematic analysis.
According to both physicians and nurses, physical impairment and being dependent on others threatened the residents’ dignity. Whether or not this led to a violation of an individual resident’s dignity, depended - in staff’s opinion - on the resident’s ability to show resilience and to keep his/her individuality. Staff mentioned treating residents with respect and taking care of their privacy as most important elements of dignity-conserving care and strived to treat the residents as they would like to be treated themselves. They could often mention aspects that were important for a particular resident’s dignity. But, when asked what they could contribute to a particular resident’s dignity, they often mentioned general aspects of dignity-conserving care, which could apply to most nursing home residents. By attempting to give dignity-conserving care, physicians and nurses often experienced conflicting values in daily care and barriers caused by the lack of resources.
Tailoring dignity-conserving care to an individual nursing home resident appears hard to bring about in daily practice. Both attention to solve contextual barriers within the nursing home as well as more awareness of staff members for their own values, which they take as a reference point in treating residents, is needed to promote personal dignity in the nursing home setting.
PMCID: PMC3850947  PMID: 24041222
Dignity; Elderly care physicians; End-of-life issues; Interviews; Nurses; Nursing home; Older people
10.  How Do People Make Continence Care Happen? An Analysis of Organizational Culture in Two Nursing Homes 
The Gerontologist  2009;50(3):327-339.
Purpose: Although nursing homes (NHs) are criticized for offering poor quality continence care, little is known about the organizational processes that underlie this care. This study investigated the influence of organizational culture on continence care practices in two NHs. Design and Methods: This ethnographic study explored continence care from the perspectives of NH stakeholders, including residents and interdisciplinary team members. Data were collected through participant observation, interviews, and archival records. Results: Human relations dimensions of organizational culture influenced continence care by affecting institutional missions, admissions and hiring practices, employee tenure, treatment strategies, interdisciplinary teamwork, and group decision making. Closed system approaches, parochial identity, and an employee focus stabilized staff turnover, fostered evidence-based practice, and supported hierarchical toileting programs in one facility. Within a more dynamic environment, open system approaches, professional identity, and job focus allowed flexible care practices during periods of staff turnover. Neither organizational culture fully supported interdisciplinary team efforts to maximize the bladder and bowel health of residents. Implications: Organizational culture varies in NHs, shaping the continence care practices of interdisciplinary teams and leading to the selective use of treatments across facilities. Human relations dimensions of organizational culture, including open or closed systems, professional or parochial identity, and employee or job focus are critical to the success of quality improvement initiatives. Evidence-based interventions should be tailored to organizational culture to promote adoption and sustainability of resident care programs.
PMCID: PMC2867496  PMID: 20008040
Organizational culture; Incontinence; Interdisciplinary teams; Qualitative research
11.  Influenza vaccination in Alberta long-term care facilities 
Canada's National Advisory Committee on Immunization recommends that both staff and residents of long-term care facilities be vaccinated against influenza. This paper describes the influenza vaccination policies and programs, as well as vaccination rates, for staff and residents of long-term care institutions in Alberta. Such data have not previously been reported.
Data were collected by means of an anonymous mail survey (with 2 reminders) sent to Alberta nursing homes and auxiliary hospitals in spring 1999.
Of 160 facilities providing long-term care during the study period, 136 responded to the survey (85%). Of these, only 85 provided data on staff vaccination rates, whereas 118 provided data on resident vaccination rates. For institutions reporting this information, the median proportion of staff vaccinated was 29.9% and the median proportion of residents vaccinated was 91.0%. Only 2 facilities reported that staff vaccination was mandatory; however, only one of these had a written policy consistent with the self-report period. Using a travelling vaccination cart, offering vaccination on night shift, and monitoring and providing feedback about staff vaccination rates were infrequently employed as elements of staff vaccination programs, although all were positively correlated with staff vaccination rates. Standing orders for resident vaccination were reported by only 84 facilities. Fourteen institutions required written consent for vaccination from the resident or a relative. Facility requirements for consent to vaccinate from the resident or a relative were significantly associated with mean vaccine coverage: 90.5% coverage for institutions requiring verbal consent, 86.5% coverage for institutions requiring written consent and 95.0% for institutions not requiring written or verbal consent.
Staff vaccination rates in Alberta long-term care facilities are unacceptably low. Changes in staff vaccination programs may improve the situation even in the absence of mandatory vaccination or work exclusion rules. Requirements for written consent for vaccination of residents of long-term care facilities may be a barrier to immunization.
PMCID: PMC81068  PMID: 11387914
12.  Consequences from use of reminiscence - a randomised intervention study in ten Danish nursing homes 
BMC Geriatrics  2010;10:33.
Reminiscence is the systematic use of memories and recollections to strengthen self-identity and self-worth. The study aim was to investigate the consequences for nursing home residents and staff of integrating reminiscence into daily nursing care.
In this randomised study, ten nursing homes were matched into two groups on the basis of location, type and size. In the period August 2006 - August 2007, staff in the Intervention Group were trained and supported in the use of reminiscence, involving individual and group sessions with residents as well as reminiscence boxes, posters and exhibitions. At baseline and again 6 and 12 months after the intervention start, data were collected on residents' cognitive level, agitated behaviour, general functioning and proxy-assessed quality of life, as well as on staff well-being and job satisfaction. Mixed linear modelling was used to analyse differences in outcome between the intervention and control groups.
Project drop-out rates were 32% for residents and 38% for nursing staff. Most staff in the Intervention Group considered reminiscence a useful tool that improved their communication with residents, and that they would recommend to other nursing homes. There were no significant differences between residents in the Intervention and the Control Group in cognitive level, agitated behaviour or general functioning. Residents in the Intervention Group showed significant higher score at 6 months in quality of life subscale 'Response to surroundings', but there was no significant difference at 12 months.
Positive effects of reminiscence were observed for all staff outcome measures, the only exception being SF-12 self-rated physical health. At 6 months after start of reminiscence, staff in the Intervention Group had significantly better scores than those in the Control Group for Personal accomplishment, Emotional exhaustion, Depersonalisation, 'Attitude towards individual contact with residents' and SF-12 self-rated mental health. At 12 months after start of reminiscence, staff in the Intervention Group had significantly better scores than those in the Control Group for Emotional exhaustion and 'Professional role and development'.
The use of reminiscence appeared to have little long-term effect on the nursing home residents. Nursing staff in the Intervention Group experienced greater satisfaction with professional roles and developed a more positive view of the residents.
International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial Number Register: ISRCTN90253170.
PMCID: PMC2897783  PMID: 20525395
13.  CONNECT for Better Fall Prevention in Nursing Homes: Results from a Pilot Intervention Study 
We hypothesized that an intervention which improves nursing home (NH) staff connections, communication, and problem solving (CONNECT) would improve implementation of a falls reduction education program (FALLS).
Cluster randomized trial.
Community (n=4) and VA NHs (n=4)
Staff in any role with resident contact (n=497).
NHs received FALLS alone (control) or CONNECT followed by FALLS (intervention), each delivered over 3-months. CONNECT used story-telling, relationship mapping, mentoring, self-monitoring and feedback to help staff identify communication gaps and practice interaction strategies. FALLS included group training, modules, teleconferences, academic detailing, and audit/feedback.
NH staff completed surveys about interactions at baseline, 3 months (immediately following CONNECT or control period), and 6 months (immediately following FALLS). A random sample of resident charts was abstracted for fall risk reduction documentation (n=651). Change in facility fall rates was an exploratory outcome. Focus groups were conducted to explore changes in organizational learning.
Significant improvements in staff perceptions of communication quality, participation in decision making, safety climate, care giving quality, and use of local interaction strategies were observed in intervention community NHs (treatment by time effect p=.01), but not in VA NHs where a ceiling effect was observed. Fall risk reduction documentation did not change significantly, and the direction of change in individual facilities did not relate to observed direction of change in fall rates. Fall rates did not change in control facilities (2.61 and 2.64 falls/bed/yr), but decreased by 12% in intervention facilities (2.34 to 2.06 falls/bed/yr); the effect of treatment on rate of change was 0.81 (0.55, 1.20).
CONNECT has the potential to improve care delivery in NHs, but the trend toward improving fall rates requires confirmation in a larger ongoing study.
PMCID: PMC3965191  PMID: 24279686
nursing homes; accidental falls; staff education
14.  Pneumonia care and the nursing home: a qualitative descriptive study of resident and family member perspectives 
BMC Geriatrics  2006;6:2.
Nursing home residents are frequently sent to hospital for diagnostic tests or to receive acute health care services. These transfers are both costly and for some, associated with increased risks. Although improved technology allows long-term care facilities to deliver more complex health care on site, if this is to become a trend then residents and family members must see the value of such care. This qualitative study examined resident and family member perspectives on in situ care for pneumonia.
A qualitative descriptive study design was used. Participants were residents and family members of residents treated for pneumonia drawn from a larger randomized controlled trial of a clinical pathway to manage nursing home-acquired pneumonia on-site. A total of 14 in-depth interviews were conducted. Interview data were analyzed using the editing style, described by Miller and Crabtree, to identify key themes.
Both residents and family members preferred that pneumonia be treated in the nursing home, where possible. They both felt that caring and attention are key aspects of care which are more easily accessible in the nursing home setting. However, residents felt that staff or doctors should make the decision whether to hospitalize them, whereas family members wanted to be consulted or involved in the decision-making process.
These findings suggest that interventions to reduce hospitalization of nursing home residents with pneumonia are consistent with resident and family member preferences.
PMCID: PMC1379645  PMID: 16430782
15.  Implementing the 2009 Institute of Medicine recommendations on resident physician work hours, supervision, and safety 
Long working hours and sleep deprivation have been a facet of physician training in the US since the advent of the modern residency system. However, the scientific evidence linking fatigue with deficits in human performance, accidents and errors in industries from aeronautics to medicine, nuclear power, and transportation has mounted over the last 40 years. This evidence has also spawned regulations to help ensure public safety across safety-sensitive industries, with the notable exception of medicine.
In late 2007, at the behest of the US Congress, the Institute of Medicine embarked on a year-long examination of the scientific evidence linking resident physician sleep deprivation with clinical performance deficits and medical errors. The Institute of Medicine’s report, entitled “Resident duty hours: Enhancing sleep, supervision and safety”, published in January 2009, recommended new limits on resident physician work hours and workload, increased supervision, a heightened focus on resident physician safety, training in structured handovers and quality improvement, more rigorous external oversight of work hours and other aspects of residency training, and the identification of expanded funding sources necessary to implement the recommended reforms successfully and protect the public and resident physicians themselves from preventable harm.
Given that resident physicians comprise almost a quarter of all physicians who work in hospitals, and that taxpayers, through Medicare and Medicaid, fund graduate medical education, the public has a deep investment in physician training. Patients expect to receive safe, high-quality care in the nation’s teaching hospitals. Because it is their safety that is at issue, their voices should be central in policy decisions affecting patient safety. It is likewise important to integrate the perspectives of resident physicians, policy makers, and other constituencies in designing new policies. However, since its release, discussion of the Institute of Medicine report has been largely confined to the medical education community, led by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).
To begin gathering these perspectives and developing a plan to implement safer work hours for resident physicians, a conference entitled “Enhancing sleep, supervision and safety: What will it take to implement the Institute of Medicine recommendations?” was held at Harvard Medical School on June 17–18, 2010. This White Paper is a product of a diverse group of 26 representative stakeholders bringing relevant new information and innovative practices to bear on a critical patient safety problem. Given that our conference included experts from across disciplines with diverse perspectives and interests, not every recommendation was endorsed by each invited conference participant. However, every recommendation made here was endorsed by the majority of the group, and many were endorsed unanimously. Conference members participated in the process, reviewed the final product, and provided input before publication. Participants provided their individual perspectives, which do not necessarily represent the formal views of any organization.
In September 2010 the ACGME issued new rules to go into effect on July 1, 2011. Unfortunately, they stop considerably short of the Institute of Medicine’s recommendations and those endorsed by this conference. In particular, the ACGME only applied the limitation of 16 hours to first-year resident physicans. Thus, it is clear that policymakers, hospital administrators, and residency program directors who wish to implement safer health care systems must go far beyond what the ACGME will require. We hope this White Paper will serve as a guide and provide encouragement for that effort.
Resident physician workload and supervision
By the end of training, a resident physician should be able to practice independently. Yet much of resident physicians’ time is dominated by tasks with little educational value. The caseload can be so great that inadequate reflective time is left for learning based on clinical experiences. In addition, supervision is often vaguely defined and discontinuous. Medical malpractice data indicate that resident physicians are frequently named in lawsuits, most often for lack of supervision. The recommendations are: The ACGME should adjust resident physicians workload requirements to optimize educational value. Resident physicians as well as faculty should be involved in work redesign that eliminates nonessential and noneducational activity from resident physician dutiesMechanisms should be developed for identifying in real time when a resident physician’s workload is excessive, and processes developed to activate additional providersTeamwork should be actively encouraged in delivery of patient care. Historically, much of medical training has focused on individual knowledge, skills, and responsibility. As health care delivery has become more complex, it will be essential to train resident and attending physicians in effective teamwork that emphasizes collective responsibility for patient care and recognizes the signs, both individual and systemic, of a schedule and working conditions that are too demanding to be safeHospitals should embrace the opportunities that resident physician training redesign offers. Hospitals should recognize and act on the potential benefits of work redesign, eg, increased efficiency, reduced costs, improved quality of care, and resident physician and attending job satisfactionAttending physicians should supervise all hospital admissions. Resident physicians should directly discuss all admissions with attending physicians. Attending physicians should be both cognizant of and have input into the care patients are to receive upon admission to the hospitalInhouse supervision should be required for all critical care services, including emergency rooms, intensive care units, and trauma services. Resident physicians should not be left unsupervised to care for critically ill patients. In settings in which the acuity is high, physicians who have completed residency should provide direct supervision for resident physicians. Supervising physicians should always be physically in the hospital for supervision of resident physicians who care for critically ill patientsThe ACGME should explicitly define “good” supervision by specialty and by year of training. Explicit requirements for intensity and level of training for supervision of specific clinical scenarios should be providedCenters for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) should use graduate medical education funding to provide incentives to programs with proven, effective levels of supervision. Although this action would require federal legislation, reimbursement rules would help to ensure that hospitals pay attention to the importance of good supervision and require it from their training programs
Resident physician work hours
Although the IOM “Sleep, supervision and safety” report provides a comprehensive review and discussion of all aspects of graduate medical education training, the report’s focal point is its recommendations regarding the hours that resident physicians are currently required to work. A considerable body of scientific evidence, much of it cited by the Institute of Medicine report, describes deteriorating performance in fatigued humans, as well as specific studies on resident physician fatigue and preventable medical errors.
The question before this conference was what work redesign and cultural changes are needed to reform work hours as recommended by the Institute of Medicine’s evidence-based report? Extensive scientific data demonstrate that shifts exceeding 12–16 hours without sleep are unsafe. Several principles should be followed in efforts to reduce consecutive hours below this level and achieve safer work schedules. The recommendations are: Limit resident physician work hours to 12–16 hour maximum shiftsA minimum of 10 hours off duty should be scheduled between shiftsResident physician input into work redesign should be actively solicitedSchedules should be designed that adhere to principles of sleep and circadian science; this includes careful consideration of the effects of multiple consecutive night shifts, and provision of adequate time off after night work, as specified in the IOM reportResident physicians should not be scheduled up to the maximum permissible limits; emergencies frequently occur that require resident physicians to stay longer than their scheduled shifts, and this should be anticipated in scheduling resident physicians’ work shiftsHospitals should anticipate the need for iterative improvement as new schedules are initiated; be prepared to learn from the initial phase-in, and change the plan as neededAs resident physician work hours are redesigned, attending physicians should also be considered; a potential consequence of resident physician work hour reduction and increased supervisory requirements may be an increase in work for attending physicians; this should be carefully monitored, and adjustments to attending physician work schedules made as needed to prevent unsafe work hours or working conditions for this group“Home call” should be brought under the overall limits of working hours; work load and hours should be monitored in each residency program to ensure that resident physicians and fellows on home call are getting sufficient sleepMedicare funding for graduate medical education in each hospital should be linked with adherence to the Institute of Medicine limits on resident physician work hours
Moonlighting by resident physicians
The Institute of Medicine report recommended including external as well as internal moonlighting in working hour limits. The recommendation is: All moonlighting work hours should be included in the ACGME working hour limits and actively monitored. Hospitals should formalize a moonlighting policy and establish systems for actively monitoring resident physician moonlighting
Safety of resident physicians
The “Sleep, supervision and safety” report also addresses fatigue-related harm done to resident physicians themselves. The report focuses on two main sources of physical injury to resident physicians impaired by fatigue, ie, needle-stick exposure to blood-borne pathogens and motor vehicle crashes. Providing safe transportation home for resident physicians is a logistical and financial challenge for hospitals. Educating physicians at all levels on the dangers of fatigue is clearly required to change driving behavior so that safe hospital-funded transport home is used effectively. Fatigue-related injury prevention (including not driving while drowsy) should be taught in medical school and during residency, and reinforced with attending physicians; hospitals and residency programs must be informed that resident physicians’ ability to judge their own level of impairment is impaired when they are sleep deprived; hence, leaving decisions about the capacity to drive to impaired resident physicians is not recommendedHospitals should provide transportation to all resident physicians who report feeling too tired to drive safely; in addition, although consecutive work should not exceed 16 hours, hospitals should provide transportation for all resident physicians who, because of unforeseen reasons or emergencies, work for longer than consecutive 24 hours; transportation under these circumstances should be automatically provided to house staff, and should not rely on self-identification or request
Training in effective handovers and quality improvement
Handover practice for resident physicians, attendings, and other health care providers has long been identified as a weak link in patient safety throughout health care settings. Policies to improve handovers of care must be tailored to fit the appropriate clinical scenario, recognizing that information overload can also be a problem. At the heart of improving handovers is the organizational effort to improve quality, an effort in which resident physicians have typically been insufficiently engaged. The recommendations are: Hospitals should train attending and resident physicians in effective handovers of careHospitals should create uniform processes for handovers that are tailored to meet each clinical setting; all handovers should be done verbally and face-to-face, but should also utilize written toolsWhen possible, hospitals should integrate hand-over tools into their electronic medical records (EMR) systems; these systems should be standardized to the extent possible across residency programs in a hospital, but may be tailored to the needs of specific programs and services; federal government should help subsidize adoption of electronic medical records by hospitals to improve signoutWhen feasible, handovers should be a team effort including nurses, patients, and familiesHospitals should include residents in their quality improvement and patient safety efforts; the ACGME should specify in their core competency requirements that resident physicians work on quality improvement projects; likewise, the Joint Commission should require that resident physicians be included in quality improvement and patient safety programs at teaching hospitals; hospital administrators and residency program directors should create opportunities for resident physicians to become involved in ongoing quality improvement projects and root cause analysis teams; feedback on successful quality improvement interventions should be shared with resident physicians and broadly disseminatedQuality improvement/patient safety concepts should be integral to the medical school curriculum; medical school deans should elevate the topics of patient safety, quality improvement, and teamwork; these concepts should be integrated throughout the medical school curriculum and reinforced throughout residency; mastery of these concepts by medical students should be tested on the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) stepsFederal government should support involvement of resident physicians in quality improvement efforts; initiatives to improve quality by including resident physicians in quality improvement projects should be financially supported by the Department of Health and Human Services
Monitoring and oversight of the ACGME
While the ACGME is a key stakeholder in residency training, external voices are essential to ensure that public interests are heard in the development and monitoring of standards. Consequently, the Institute of Medicine report recommended external oversight and monitoring through the Joint Commission and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The recommendations are: Make comprehensive fatigue management a Joint Commission National Patient Safety Goal; fatigue is a safety concern not only for resident physicians, but also for nurses, attending physicians, and other health care workers; the Joint Commission should seek to ensure that all health care workers, not just resident physicians, are working as safely as possibleFederal government, including the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, should encourage development of comprehensive fatigue management programs which all health systems would eventually be required to implementMake ACGME compliance with working hours a “ condition of participation” for reimbursement of direct and indirect graduate medical education costs; financial incentives will greatly increase the adoption of and compliance with ACGME standards
Future financial support for implementation
The Institute of Medicine’s report estimates that $1.7 billion (in 2008 dollars) would be needed to implement its recommendations. Twenty-five percent of that amount ($376 million) will be required just to bring hospitals into compliance with the existing 2003 ACGME rules. Downstream savings to the health care system could potentially result from safer care, but these benefits typically do not accrue to hospitals and residency programs, who have been asked historically to bear the burden of residency reform costs. The recommendations are: The Institute of Medicine should convene a panel of stakeholders, including private and public funders of health care and graduate medical education, to lay down the concrete steps necessary to identify and allocate the resources needed to implement the recommendations contained in the IOM “Resident duty hours: Enhancing sleep, supervision and safety” report. Conference participants suggested several approaches to engage public and private support for this initiativeEfforts to find additional funding to implement the Institute of Medicine recommendations should focus more broadly on patient safety and health care delivery reform; policy efforts focused narrowly upon resident physician work hours are less likely to succeed than broad patient safety initiatives that include residency redesign as a key componentHospitals should view the Institute of Medicine recommendations as an opportunity to begin resident physician work redesign projects as the core of a business model that embraces safety and ultimately saves resourcesBoth the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Director of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services should take the Institute of Medicine recommendations into consideration when promulgating rules for innovation grantsThe National Health Care Workforce Commission should consider the Institute of Medicine recommendations when analyzing the nation’s physician workforce needs
Recommendations for future research
Conference participants concurred that convening the stakeholders and agreeing on a research agenda was key. Some observed that some sectors within the medical education community have been reluctant to act on the data. Several logical funders for future research were identified. But above all agencies, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is the only stakeholder that funds graduate medical education upstream and will reap savings downstream if preventable medical errors are reduced as a result of reform of resident physician work hours.
PMCID: PMC3630963  PMID: 23616719
resident; hospital; working hours; safety
16.  Elderspeak’s Influence on Resistiveness to Care: Focus on Behavioral Events 
Resistiveness to care (RTC) in older adults with dementia commonly disrupts nursing care. Research has found that elderspeak (infantilizing communication) use by nursing home staff increases the probability of RTC in older adults with dementia. The current analysis used GSEQ software to analyze behavior sequences of specific behavioral events. We found that older adults with dementia most frequently reacted to elderpeak communication by negative vocalizations (screaming or yelling, negative verbalizations, crying). Since negative vocalizations disrupt nursing care, reduction in elderpeak use by staff may reduce these behaviors thereby increasing quality of care to these residents. The results clearly demonstrate that sequential analysis of behavioral events is a useful tool in examining complex communicative interactions and targeting specific problem behaviors.
PMCID: PMC2836897  PMID: 19692706
dementia care; communication; problem behaviors; resistiveness to care
17.  Bowel problem management among nursing home residents: a mixed methods study 
BMC Nursing  2014;13(1):35.
Bowel problems such as constipation, diarrhoea and faecal incontinence (FI) are prevalent conditions among nursing home residents and little is known about nursing management. This study aimed to elucidate how Norwegian registered nurses (RNs) manage bowel problems among nursing home residents.
A mixed methods approach was used combining quantitative data from a population-based cross-sectional survey and qualitative data from a focus group interview. In the cross sectional part of the study 27 of 28 nursing homes in one Norwegian municipality participated. Residents were included if they, at the time of data collection, had been a resident in a nursing home for more than three weeks or had prior stays of more than four weeks during the last six months. Residents were excluded from the study if they were younger than 65 years or had a stoma (N = 980 after exclusions). RNs filled in a questionnaire for residents regarding FI, constipation, diarrhoea, and treatments/interventions. In the focus group interview, 8 RNs participated. The focus group interview used an interview guide that included six open-ended questions.
Pad use (88.9%) and fixed toilet schedules (38.6%) were the most commonly used interventions for residents with FI. In addition, the qualitative data showed that controlled emptying of the bowels with laxatives and/or enemas was common. Common interventions for residents with constipation were laxatives (66.2%) and enemas (47%), dietary interventions (7.3%) and manual emptying of feces (6.3%). In addition, the qualitative data showed that the RNs also used fixed toilet schedules for residents with constipation. Interventions for residents with diarrhoea were Loperamide (18.3%) and dietary interventions (20.1%). RNs described bowel care management as challenging due to limited time and resources. Consequently, compromises were a part of their working strategies.
Constipation was considered to be the main focus of bowel management. Emptying the residents’ bowels was the aim of nursing intervention. FI was mainly treated passively with pads and interventions for residents with diarrhoea were limited. The RNs prioritized routine tasks in the nursing homes due to limited resources, and thereby compromising with the resident’s need for individualized bowel care.
PMCID: PMC4251841  PMID: 25469107
Constipation; Diarrhoea; Faecal incontinence; Nursing homes; Cross-sectional survey; Focus groups
18.  Optimizing antibiotics in residents of nursing homes: protocol of a randomized trial 
Antibiotics are frequently prescribed for older adults who reside in long-term care facilities. A substantial proportion of antibiotic use in this setting is inappropriate. Antibiotics are often prescribed for asymptomatic bacteriuria, a condition for which randomized trials of antibiotic therapy indicate no benefit and in fact harm. This proposal describes a randomized trial of diagnostic and therapeutic algorithms to reduce the use of antibiotics in residents of long-term care facilities.
In this on-going study, 22 nursing homes have been randomized to either use of algorithms (11 nursing homes) or to usual practise (11 nursing homes). The algorithms describe signs and symptoms for which it would be appropriate to send urine cultures or to prescribe antibiotics. The algorithms are introduced by inservicing nursing staff and by conducting one-on-one sessions for physicians using case-scenarios. The primary outcome of the study is courses of antibiotics per 1000 resident days. Secondary outcomes include urine cultures sent and antibiotic courses for urinary indications. Focus groups and semi-structured interviews with key informants will be used to assess the process of implementation and to identify key factors for sustainability.
PMCID: PMC128823  PMID: 12207826
19.  Behavioural Interventions for Urinary Incontinence in Community-Dwelling Seniors 
Executive Summary
In early August 2007, the Medical Advisory Secretariat began work on the Aging in the Community project, an evidence-based review of the literature surrounding healthy aging in the community. The Health System Strategy Division at the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care subsequently asked the secretariat to provide an evidentiary platform for the ministry’s newly released Aging at Home Strategy.
After a broad literature review and consultation with experts, the secretariat identified 4 key areas that strongly predict an elderly person’s transition from independent community living to a long-term care home. Evidence-based analyses have been prepared for each of these 4 areas: falls and fall-related injuries, urinary incontinence, dementia, and social isolation. For the first area, falls and fall-related injuries, an economic model is described in a separate report.
Please visit the Medical Advisory Secretariat Web site,, to review these titles within the Aging in the Community series.
Aging in the Community: Summary of Evidence-Based Analyses
Prevention of Falls and Fall-Related Injuries in Community-Dwelling Seniors: An Evidence-Based Analysis
Behavioural Interventions for Urinary Incontinence in Community-Dwelling Seniors: An Evidence-Based Analysis
Caregiver- and Patient-Directed Interventions for Dementia: An Evidence-Based Analysis
Social Isolation in Community-Dwelling Seniors: An Evidence-Based Analysis
The Falls/Fractures Economic Model in Ontario Residents Aged 65 Years and Over (FEMOR)
To assess the effectiveness of behavioural interventions for the treatment and management of urinary incontinence (UI) in community-dwelling seniors.
Clinical Need: Target Population and Condition
Urinary incontinence defined as “the complaint of any involuntary leakage of urine” was identified as 1 of the key predictors in a senior’s transition from independent community living to admission to a long-term care (LTC) home. Urinary incontinence is a health problem that affects a substantial proportion of Ontario’s community-dwelling seniors (and indirectly affects caregivers), impacting their health, functioning, well-being and quality of life. Based on Canadian studies, prevalence estimates range from 9% to 30% for senior men and nearly double from 19% to 55% for senior women. The direct and indirect costs associated with UI are substantial. It is estimated that the total annual costs in Canada are $1.5 billion (Cdn), and that each year a senior living at home will spend $1,000 to $1,500 on incontinence supplies.
Interventions to treat and manage UI can be classified into broad categories which include lifestyle modification, behavioural techniques, medications, devices (e.g., continence pessaries), surgical interventions and adjunctive measures (e.g., absorbent products).
The focus of this review is behavioural interventions, since they are commonly the first line of treatment considered in seniors given that they are the least invasive options with no reported side effects, do not limit future treatment options, and can be applied in combination with other therapies. In addition, many seniors would not be ideal candidates for other types of interventions involving more risk, such as surgical measures.
Note: It is recognized that the terms “senior” and “elderly” carry a range of meanings for different audiences; this report generally uses the former, but the terms are treated here as essentially interchangeable.
Description of Technology/Therapy
Behavioural interventions can be divided into 2 categories according to the target population: caregiver-dependent techniques and patient-directed techniques. Caregiver-dependent techniques (also known as toileting assistance) are targeted at medically complex, frail individuals living at home with the assistance of a caregiver, who tends to be a family member. These seniors may also have cognitive deficits and/or motor deficits. A health care professional trains the senior’s caregiver to deliver an intervention such as prompted voiding, habit retraining, or timed voiding. The health care professional who trains the caregiver is commonly a nurse or a nurse with advanced training in the management of UI, such as a nurse continence advisor (NCA) or a clinical nurse specialist (CNS).
The second category of behavioural interventions consists of patient-directed techniques targeted towards mobile, motivated seniors. Seniors in this population are cognitively able, free from any major physical deficits, and motivated to regain and/or improve their continence. A nurse or a nurse with advanced training in UI management, such as an NCA or CNS, delivers the patient-directed techniques. These are often provided as multicomponent interventions including a combination of bladder training techniques, pelvic floor muscle training (PFMT), education on bladder control strategies, and self-monitoring. Pelvic floor muscle training, defined as a program of repeated pelvic floor muscle contractions taught and supervised by a health care professional, may be employed as part of a multicomponent intervention or in isolation.
Education is a large component of both caregiver-dependent and patient-directed behavioural interventions, and patient and/or caregiver involvement as well as continued practice strongly affect the success of treatment. Incontinence products, which include a large variety of pads and devices for effective containment of urine, may be used in conjunction with behavioural techniques at any point in the patient’s management.
Evidence-Based Analysis Methods
A comprehensive search strategy was used to identify systematic reviews and randomized controlled trials that examined the effectiveness, safety, and cost-effectiveness of caregiver-dependent and patient-directed behavioural interventions for the treatment of UI in community-dwelling seniors (see Appendix 1).
Research Questions
Are caregiver-dependent behavioural interventions effective in improving UI in medically complex, frail community-dwelling seniors with/without cognitive deficits and/or motor deficits?
Are patient-directed behavioural interventions effective in improving UI in mobile, motivated community-dwelling seniors?
Are behavioural interventions delivered by NCAs or CNSs in a clinic setting effective in improving incontinence outcomes in community-dwelling seniors?
Assessment of Quality of Evidence
The quality of the evidence was assessed as high, moderate, low, or very low according to the GRADE methodology and GRADE Working Group. As per GRADE the following definitions apply:
Summary of Findings
Executive Summary Table 1 summarizes the results of the analysis.
The available evidence was limited by considerable variation in study populations and in the type and severity of UI for studies examining both caregiver-directed and patient-directed interventions. The UI literature frequently is limited to reporting subjective outcome measures such as patient observations and symptoms. The primary outcome of interest, admission to a LTC home, was not reported in the UI literature. The number of eligible studies was low, and there were limited data on long-term follow-up.
Summary of Evidence on Behavioural Interventions for the Treatment of Urinary Incontinence in Community-Dwelling Seniors
Prompted voiding
Habit retraining
Timed voiding
Bladder training
PFMT (with or without biofeedback)
Bladder control strategies
CI refers to confidence interval; CNS, clinical nurse specialist; NCA, nurse continence advisor; PFMT, pelvic floor muscle training; RCT, randomized controlled trial; WMD, weighted mean difference; UI, urinary incontinence.
Economic Analysis
A budget impact analysis was conducted to forecast costs for caregiver-dependent and patient-directed multicomponent behavioural techniques delivered by NCAs, and PFMT alone delivered by physiotherapists. All costs are reported in 2008 Canadian dollars. Based on epidemiological data, published medical literature and clinical expert opinion, the annual cost of caregiver-dependent behavioural techniques was estimated to be $9.2 M, while the annual costs of patient-directed behavioural techniques delivered by either an NCA or physiotherapist were estimated to be $25.5 M and $36.1 M, respectively. Estimates will vary if the underlying assumptions are changed.
Currently, the province of Ontario absorbs the cost of NCAs (available through the 42 Community Care Access Centres across the province) in the home setting. The 2007 Incontinence Care in the Community Report estimated that the total cost being absorbed by the public system of providing continence care in the home is $19.5 M in Ontario. This cost estimate included resources such as personnel, communication with physicians, record keeping and product costs. Clinic costs were not included in this estimation because currently these come out of the global budget of the respective hospital and very few continence clinics actually exist in the province. The budget impact analysis factored in a cost for the clinic setting, assuming that the public system would absorb the cost with this new model of community care.
Considerations for Ontario Health System
An expert panel on aging in the community met on 3 occasions from January to May 2008, and in part, discussed treatment of UI in seniors in Ontario with a focus on caregiver-dependent and patient-directed behavioural interventions. In particular, the panel discussed how treatment for UI is made available to seniors in Ontario and who provides the service. Some of the major themes arising from the discussions included:
Services/interventions that currently exist in Ontario offering behavioural interventions to treat UI are not consistent. There is a lack of consistency in how seniors access services for treatment of UI, who manages patients and what treatment patients receive.
Help-seeking behaviours are important to consider when designing optimal service delivery methods.
There is considerable social stigma associated with UI and therefore there is a need for public education and an awareness campaign.
The cost of incontinent supplies and the availability of NCAs were highlighted.
There is moderate-quality evidence that the following interventions are effective in improving UI in mobile motivated seniors:
Multicomponent behavioural interventions including a combination of bladder training techniques, PFMT (with or without biofeedback), education on bladder control strategies and self-monitoring techniques.
Pelvic floor muscle training alone.
There is moderate quality evidence that when behavioural interventions are led by NCAs or CNSs in a clinic setting, they are effective in improving UI in seniors.
There is limited low-quality evidence that prompted voiding may be effective in medically complex, frail seniors with motivated caregivers.
There is insufficient evidence for the following interventions in medically complex, frail seniors with motivated caregivers:
habit retraining, and
timed voiding.
PMCID: PMC3377527  PMID: 23074508
20.  Randomized Multilevel Intervention to Improve Outcomes of Residents in Nursing Homes in Need of Improvement 
A comprehensive multilevel intervention was tested to build organizational capacity to create and sustain improvement in quality of care and subsequently improve resident outcomes in nursing homes in need of improvement. Intervention facilities (n=29) received a two-year multilevel intervention with monthly on-site consultation from expert nurses with graduate education in gerontological nursing. Attention control facilities (n=29) that also needed to improve resident outcomes received monthly information about aging and physical assessment of elders.
Design and Methods
Randomized clinical trial of nursing homes in need of improving resident outcomes of bladder and bowel incontinence, weight loss, pressure ulcers, and decline in activities of daily living (ADL). It was hypothesized that following the intervention, experimental facilities would have better resident outcomes, higher quality of care, higher staff retention, more organizational attributes of improved working conditions than control facilities, similar staffing and staff mix, and lower total and direct care costs.
The intervention did improve quality of care (p=0.02); there were improvements in pressure ulcers (p=0.05), weight loss (p=0.05). Staff retention, organizational working conditions, staffing, and staff mix and most costs were not affected by the intervention. Leadership turnover was surprisingly excessive in both intervention and control groups.
Some facilities that are in need of improving quality of care and resident outcomes are able to build the organizational capacity to improve while not increasing staffing or costs of care. Improvement requires continuous supportive consultation and leadership willing to involve staff and work together to build the systematic improvements in care delivery needed.
PMCID: PMC3379965  PMID: 21816681
randomized clinical trial; nursing homes; outcomes of care; cost analysis; quality improvement; staff retention; working conditions
21.  Complaints in for-profit, non-profit and public nursing homes in two Canadian provinces 
Open Medicine  2011;5(4):e183-e192.
Nursing homes provide long-term housing, support and nursing care to frail elders who are no longer able to function independently. Although studies conducted in the United States have demonstrated an association between for-profit ownership and inferior quality, relatively few Canadian studies have made performance comparisons with reference to type of ownership. Complaints are one proxy measure of performance in the nursing home setting. Our study goal was to determine whether there is an association between facility ownership and the frequency of nursing home complaints.
We analyzed publicly available data on complaints, regulatory measures, facility ownership and size for 604 facilities in Ontario over 1 year (2007/08) and 62 facilities in British Columbia (Fraser Health region) over 4 years (2004–2008). All analyses were carried out at the facility level. Negative binomial regression analysis was used to assess the association between type of facility ownership and frequency of complaints.
The mean (standard deviation) number of verified/substantiated complaints per 100 beds per year in Ontario and Fraser Health was 0.45 (1.10) and 0.78 (1.63) respectively. Most complaints related to resident care. Complaints were more frequent in facilities with more citations, i.e., violations of the legislation or regulations governing a home, (Ontario) and inspection violations (Fraser Health). Compared with Ontario’s for-profit chain facilities, adjusted incident rate ratios and 95% confidence intervals of verified complaints were 0.56 (0.27–1.16), 0.58 (0.34–1.00), 0.43 (0.21– 0.88), and 0.50 (0.30– 0.84) for for-profit single-site, non-profit, charitable, and public facilities respectively. In Fraser Health, the adjusted incident rate ratio of substantiated complaints in non-profit facilities compared with for-profit facilities was 0.18 (0.07–0.45).
Compared with for-profit chain facilities, non-profit, charitable and public facilities had significantly lower rates of complaints in Ontario. Likewise, in British Columbia’s Fraser Health region, non-profit owned facilities had significantly lower rates of complaints compared with for-profit owned facilities.
PMCID: PMC3345377  PMID: 22567074
22.  PROSpER: PReferences for the Organisation of acute health Services for oldER people: protocol for a mixed methods study 
BMJ Open  2012;2(2):e001081.
Organisation of acute care services for people living in residential aged care facilities (RACF) is a complex area of health policy. For people living in RACF, the emergency department is often used to provide acute care; needs of RACF residents, however, are not always well met. Alternative models of delivering care must be acceptable to a variety of stakeholders; however, little is known about the values and preferences that people attach to aspects of how and where care is delivered.
The PROSpER Study examines people's preferences for the organisation of acute healthcare services for older people in RACF. The authors aim to (1) determine which factors influence preferences of residents, carers and providers for how and where acute care is delivered and (2) determine the relative importance of these factors and the acceptable trade-offs between them. Qualitative and quantitative methods will be used. One-on-one interviews will be conducted with RACF residents, their families, staff of RACF and emergency department staff. A discrete choice study will then be designed to quantitatively assess preferences for alternative models of care delivery. Approximately 600 respondents from three respondent groups will be surveyed: older people living in RACF, family members of aged care residents and staff of RACF. A mixed logit model will be used; results will be expressed as parameter estimates (β) and odds of choosing one option over an alternative. Trade-offs between attributes will also be calculated.
Ethics and dissemination
The PROSpER Study has been approved by the University of Sydney, Human Research Ethics Committee (Protocol numbers 10653 and 14382) and Royal Perth Hospital Ethics Committee (reference 2009/045). Results will be published in peer-reviewed scientific journals and via conference presentations; a newsletter will also be provided to study participants. A stakeholder roundtable will also be held to discuss the results.
Article summary
Article focus
To assess the preferences of older people living in residential aged care facilities (RACF), their families and staff in relation to the provision of acute health care services for older Australians in RACF.
To determine what factors most influence the preferences of these stakeholders for how and where acute care is delivered.
To determine the relative importance of these factors and the trade-offs between them.
Key messages
The organisation of acute healthcare services for older people living in RACF is a complex area of health policy involving considerations of clinical, economic, ethical and legal issues. For older people living in RACF, the emergency department is frequently used to provide acute care services. While emergency department generally works well if people have a short-term problem that can be resolved with a one-off intervention, the needs of people from RACF, often with chronic disease, multiple complex health problems and frailty are less well met.
Alternative models of delivering acute care need to be acceptable to the residents, family and RACF staff; however, little is known about the values and preferences that people attach to aspects of how and where care is delivered or the trade-offs between various aspects of care that people are willing to make.
This study will use best practice qualitative and quantitative methods for preference elicitation (a discrete choice experiment) to assess the preferences and acceptable trade-offs of RACF residents, their families and staff for alternative healthcare delivery models.
Strengths and limitations of this study
The strengths of the study are that it is the first study to use discrete choice methods to examine preferences for alternative models of acute healthcare service delivery in multiple stakeholder groups: residents of RACF, their families and RACF staff.
The limitation is that it is conducted in one country, Australia, and thus its generalisability may be limited by the prevailing model of acute healthcare service delivery.
PMCID: PMC3317141  PMID: 22466038
23.  The effects of small-scale, homelike facilities for older people with dementia on residents, family caregivers and staff: design of a longitudinal, quasi-experimental study 
BMC Geriatrics  2009;9:3.
Small-scale and homelike facilities for older people with dementia are rising in current dementia care. In these facilities, a small number of residents live together and form a household with staff. Normal, daily life and social participation are emphasized. It is expected that these facilities improve residents' quality of life. Moreover, it may have a positive influence on staff's job satisfaction and families involvement and satisfaction with care. However, effects of these small-scale and homelike facilities have hardly been investigated. Since the number of people with dementia increases, and institutional long-term care is more and more organized in small-scale and homelike facilities, more research into effects is necessary. This paper presents the design of a study investigating effects of small-scale living facilities in the Netherlands on residents, family caregivers and nursing staff.
Methods and design
A longitudinal, quasi-experimental study is carried out, in which 2 dementia care settings are compared: small-scale living facilities and regular psychogeriatric wards in traditional nursing homes. Data is collected from residents, their family caregivers and nursing staff at baseline and after 6 and 12 months of follow-up. Approximately 2 weeks prior to baseline measurement, residents are screened on cognition and activities of daily living (ADL). Based on this screening profile, residents in psychogeriatric wards are matched to residents living in small-scale living facilities. The primary outcome measure for residents is quality of life. In addition, neuropsychiatric symptoms, depressive symptoms and social engagement are assessed. Involvement with care, perceived burden and satisfaction with care provision are primary outcome variables for family caregivers. The primary outcomes for nursing staff are job satisfaction and motivation. Furthermore, job characteristics social support, autonomy and workload are measured. A process evaluation is performed to investigate to what extent small-scale living facilities and psychogeriatric wards are designed as they were intended. In addition, participants' satisfaction and experiences with small-scale living facilities are investigated.
A longitudinal, quasi-experimental study is presented to investigate effects of small-scale living facilities. Although some challenges concerning this design exist, it is currently the most feasible method to assess effects of this relatively new dementia care setting.
PMCID: PMC2637879  PMID: 19154579
24.  Assessing the effect of a physical activity intervention in a nursing home ecology: a natural lab approach 
BMC Geriatrics  2014;14(1):117.
Physical activity (PA) is not only an important marker of physical impairment, but also a pathway to improve quality of life and enhance cognitive and social functioning of old individuals. Yet, making interventional use of PA training as a means for prevention and enhancement of quality of life of nursing home residents has found very limited attention worldwide so far. That said, the project ‘Long-term Care in Motion’ (LTCMo) as a part of the INNOVAGE consortium (funded by the European Commission) has the following aims: Overall: Install and assess a socially innovative intervention in the nursing home ecology. Concrete: (a) Conceptualization of a multidimensional intervention program (resident and staff oriented) with the potential to promote PA in nursing home residents; (b) Mixed-methods assessment of the program based on automated recording as well as questionnaire data.
LTCMo’s PA-related intervention has several components which are applied in parallel manner: (1) Residents are engaged in a physical exercise program that is based on multiple approaches: supervised group sessions, a serious games approach, and specific training in severely impaired persons; (2) Staff members will receive a competence training with a focus on PA motivation and facilitation of residents’ PA engagement. Primary outcome assessment (movement-related behavior of residents) is completely conducted by means of automated data collection strategies (accelerometer-based activity recording, sensor-based life space recording). This is enriched by a broad range of secondary outcomes (e.g., cognitive performance, depression of residents; behavioral and attitudinal components of staff). Pre-, post- and 3-month follow-up assessment will take place in the target intervention setting as well as in a waiting control condition in which we will also replicate the training and its assessment in a later step.
Although we are faced with methodological challenges (e.g., rather small sample size; no randomized control trial), we believe that our approach has something to offer and indeed has some unique characteristics that may have the potential to contribute to the enhancement of nursing home residents’ quality of life and at the same time further PA-related research with vulnerable populations at large.
Trial registration
Current Controlled Trials ISRCTN96090441. Registered 31 July 2014.
PMCID: PMC4273428  PMID: 25407431
Multidimensional physical activity intervention; Nursing home residents and staff; Mixed methods; Automated activity recording; Psychosocial outcomes
25.  A New Long-Term Care Facilities Model in Nova Scotia, Canada: Protocol for a Mixed Methods Study of Care by Design 
JMIR Research Protocols  2013;2(2):e56.
Prior to the implementation of a new model of care in long-term care facilities in the Capital District Health Authority, Halifax, Nova Scotia, residents entering long-term care were responsible for finding their own family physician. As a result, care was provided by many family physicians responsible for a few residents leading to care coordination and continuity challenges. In 2009, Capital District Health Authority (CDHA) implemented a new model of long-term care called “Care by Design” which includes: a dedicated family physician per floor, 24/7 on-call physician coverage, implementation of a standardized geriatric assessment tool, and an interdisciplinary team approach to care. In addition, a new Emergency Health Services program was implemented shortly after, in which specially trained paramedics dedicated to long-term care responses are able to address urgent care needs. These changes were implemented to improve primary and emergency care for vulnerable residents. Here we describe a comprehensive mixed methods research study designed to assess the impact of these programs on care delivery and resident outcomes. The results of this research will be important to guide primary care policy for long-term care.
We aim to evaluate the impact of introducing a new model of a dedicated primary care physician and team approach to long-term care facilities in the CDHA using a mixed methods approach. As a mixed methods study, the quantitative and qualitative data findings will inform each other. Quantitatively we will measure a number of indicators of care in CDHA long-term care facilities pre and post-implementation of the new model. In the qualitative phase of the study we will explore the experience under the new model from the perspectives of stakeholders including family doctors, nurses, administration and staff as well as residents and family members. The proposed mixed method study seeks to evaluate and make policy recommendations related to primary care in long-term care facilities with a focus on end-of-life care and dementia.
This is a mixed methods study with concurrent quantitative and qualitative phases. In the quantitative phase, a retrospective time series study is being conducted. Planned analyses will measure indicators of clinical, system, and health outcomes across three time periods and assess the effect of Care by Design as a whole and its component parts. The qualitative methods explore the experiences of stakeholders (ie, physicians, nurses, paramedics, care assistants, administrators, residents, and family members) through focus groups and in depth individual interviews.
Data collection will be completed in fall 2013.
This study will generate a considerable amount of outcome data with applications for care providers, health care systems, and applications for program evaluation and quality improvement. Using the mixed methods design, this study will provide important results for stakeholders, as well as other health systems considering similar programs. In addition, this study will advance methods used to research new multifaceted interdisciplinary health delivery models using multiple and varied data sources and contribute to the discussion on evidence based health policy and program development.
PMCID: PMC3869043  PMID: 24292200
mixed methods; framework analysis; primary care; long-term care

Results 1-25 (933004)