October 9, 2015 – Services for Elders


Anchor lead:  How good are we at providing healthcare services to older people? Elizabeth Tracey reports

People 80 and older are the fastest growing segment of our population, yet a study by Alicia Arbaje, a geriatrics expert at Johns Hopkins, and colleagues, shows that when it comes to provide healthcare services to older adults, things aren’t looking good.

Arbaje: Nationwide we’re not doing that well relative to providing services for the care of older people, and not only weren’t we not doing that well but we hadn’t been doing that well for some time.   :10

Arbaje says there is a national mismatch between where older adults actually live and where services are provided, as well as an inpatient/outpatient mismatch.

Arbaje:  What we found was that although hospitals were offering some inpatient specialty care services they really weren’t offering a lot of the outpatient or post-acute care specialty services that are really needed by older people when they leave the hospital.     :14

Arbaje says services that are targeted toward helping people age in place will help avoid rehospitalizations, and both patients and caregivers should ask about such services at discharge from the hospital.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.