[A brief reference to this item appears in: Dementia and Elderly Care: the Latest Evidence Newsletter (RWHT), Volume 3 Issue 3, October 2012].
Hospitalisation can cause distress, disruption and often other medical complications for residents of long-term care. It is widely thought that multi-disciplinary teams can improve the health of Residential Aged Care (RAC) residents, thereby decreasing avoidable acute hospitalisations. The authors of this paper have devised a randomised controlled trial to assess the effectiveness of a structured multi-disciplinary team and gerontology nurse specialist (GNS) intervention for reducing avoidable hospitalisations among residents of long-term care.
The Aged Residential Care Healthcare Utilisation Study (ARCHUS) involves a cluster-randomised controlled trial of 1700 residents in long-term care facilities in the Auckland region of New Zealand. The structured GNS intervention involves a needs assessment, quality indicator benchmarking, a staff education programme and care coordination. Multi-disciplinary team (MDT) meetings involved a geriatrician, facility GP, pharmacist, GNS and senior nursing staff.
This randomised-controlled trial will evaluate the scope for the intervention to improve the health of residents in long-term residential care and reduce unnecessary admissions to hospital.
Foster, SJ. Boyd, ML. Broad, JB. [et al] (2012). Aged Residential Care Health Utilisation Study (ARCHUS): a randomised controlled trial to reduce acute hospitalisations from residential aged care. BMC Geriatrics, September 13th 2012, Vol.12(1), 54. pp.1-12. (Click here to view the PubMed abstract).