Older people´s public health care and social services. Functional ability, health complaints, agreement in needs assessment and care satisfaction

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis (compilation)


The overall aim was to describe and compare functional ability and health complaints of older people receiving municipal care in relation to housing and informal care, and factors associated with medical health care, municipal care and informal care. Further, the aim was to investigate agreement in needs assessments between personnel and older people and to investigate care satisfaction and health-related quality of life among older people receiving municipal care and services. Study I and II included 1958 persons aged 65 years and above, who were assessed for functional ability, health complaints, and level of informal and municipal care and service. Study II in addition included data from a register including medical health care. In study III (n=152), standardised needs assessments were performed by the staff. Later, the older person’s view was collected in a personal interview concerning functional ability, health complaints, public and informal care. In addition (Study IV, n=166), SF-12 was used for measuring health-related quality of life and for measuring care satisfaction.

Cohabitation was a predictor of a combination of municipal and informal care at home (OR: 5.935), while assistance with Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) provided by municipal home care and services predicted municipal care only (OR: 0.344). Care in special accommodation was predicted by advanced age (OR: 1.051), dependency in IADL (OR: 19.883), Personal Activities of Daily Living (PADL) (OR: 02.695), and impaired cognitive ability (OR: 3.849) with receiving municipal care only as a reference. Living alone (OR: 0.106), dependency in IADL (OR: 11.348) and PADL (OR: 2.506), impaired cognitive ability (OR: 3.448), impaired vision or blindness (OR: 1.812) and the absence of slowly healing wounds (OR: 0.407) were predictors of special accommodation with a combination of informal and municipal care at home as a reference. 35% of those with public care at home were admitted to hospital and 76% had contact with outpatient care by physician compared to 26% and 87% respectively of those in special accommodation. Living in special accommodation was associated with more contacts with primary health care (B=0.643) and fewer contacts with specialist care (B=-0.722). Informal care was associated with more contacts with primary health care (B=0.413), specialist care (B=0.787), admissions to (B=0.265) and days in hospital (B=1.573).

Agreement for dependency in IADL and PADL varied between good (κ=0.78) and moderate (κ=0.43). Poor agreement was found for dizziness (κw=0.17) and fair agreement for impaired hearing, urinary incontinence, pain, anxiety and depressed mood (κw between 0.21 and 0.37). Older persons reported more health complaints than were found in the personnel’s assessments, although significantly lower estimation was found only for incontinence and vision. Agreement for provided public care at home was poor, while for informal care it varied between very good and moderate. Low care satisfaction was associated with dependency in IADL (B=-1.338 and B=-1.630), impaired mobility (B=-12.579), blindness (B=-26.143), faeces incontinence (B=-11.898 and B=-17.529) and anxiety (B=-6.105 and
B=-27.197), while high care satisfaction was associated with dependency in PADL (B=2.109) and receiving informal care with IADL from spouse (B=8.738). In special accommodation, low care satisfaction had to do with continuity, timing, the staff’s personal characteristics and with their ability to give service. At home, the older people were the least satisfied with the staff’s ability to do housework and to give medical care, with the staff’s amount of time and with their own influence over their care.


  • Staffan Karlsson
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Nursing
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
Supervisors/Assistant supervisor
Award date2008 Sep 24
  • Lund University: Faculty of Medicine
Print ISBNs978-91-86059-30-9
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

Defence details Date: 2008-09-24 Time: 09:00 Place: Hörsal 1, Department of Caring Sciences, Baravägen 3, Lund External reviewer(s) Name: Asplund, Kenneth Title: Professor Affiliation: Mid Sweden University --- The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Caring Sciences (Closed 2012) (016514020)

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Related research output

Staffan Karlsson, Anna-Karin Edberg, Albert Westergren & Ingalill Rahm Hallberg, 2008, In: Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences. 22, 1, p. 136-148

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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