The growing number of elderly people results in the intensification of disability, reduced level of independency and quality of life as well as augmented demand on medical and social services. The aim of the study was to identify factors associated with probability of care dependency in disabled geriatric patients.
The study involved 200 patients aged 60 or over, consecutively admitted to the Geriatrics Unit. A cross-sectional quantitative study design. The study carried out using the questionnaire evaluating the patients’ biopsychosocial needs and level of care dependency: the Polish version of the Care Dependency Scale (CDS). Data regarding the patients’ self-care, locomotor function, emotional status, cognitive function, vision, hearing, the risk of pressure sores or falls, self-assessed health status and the sense of loneliness were obtained from medical documentation using selected elements of the CGA (Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment).
The mean CDS score (15-75) for all the evaluated patients was 55.3 ± 15.1-43.4 ± 11.9 in the category of dependent patients and 67.5 ± 4.6 in the category of independent of care, respectively (p < 0.001). The participants' mean age was 81.8 ± 6.6 (in the dependent category, 83.3, and in the independent category, 80.2). The final model produced statistically significant independent factors: cognitive ability, Instrumental-ADL performance, locomotive ability and age.
The progressing care dependency increased with the worsening of cognitive functions, difficulties performing I-ADL, locomotion impairment and advanced age. To support independent living of elderly people, healthcare professionals should recognise the situation in the community to carry out interventions aimed at preventing and minimising disability and delaying institutionalisation.

© 2020 Nordic College of Caring Science.