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Frailty Associated with Higher Risk of Death in Older People Admitted to Acute Care Hospitals

Predicting outcomes of frail older adults is complex, especially when they become seriously ill.

GAPNA member Margaret Sayers and co-authors tested the measurement properties, especially the predictive validity, of a frailty index based on a comprehensive geriatric assessment (FI-CGA) in an acute care setting in relation to the risk of death, length of stay, and discharge destination.

Results indicated the risk of dying increased with each 0.01 increment in the FI-CGA. People who were discharged home had the lowest admitting mean FI-CGA compared with those who died, or were discharged to nursing home. Likewise, increasing FI-CGA values on admission were significantly associated with a longer length of hospital stay.

The authors concluded frailty, measured by the FI-CGA, was independently associated with a higher risk of death and other adverse outcomes in older people admitted to an acute care hospital.

For details, see Evans et al. (2013). The risk of adverse outcomes in hospitalized older patients in relation to a frailty index based on a comprehensive geriatric assessment. Age and Ageing, 43(1), 127-132. doi:10.1093/ageing/aft156

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