Middle Articles

Pilot Study of Old-age Pensioners

Br Med J 1969; 1 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.1.5641.432 (Published 15 February 1969) Cite this as: Br Med J 1969;1:432
  1. John D. Paulett,
  2. Jean D. Buxton

    Abstract

    Two groups of old-age pensioners in St. Paul's Cray were screened for physical illness, social and family connexions, and personal activities. The first group comprised 100 people (10% random sample of a suburban practice of 12,000 patients), and the second group comprised the total population of a sheltered area (85 people).

    The findings showed that geographical separation of relatives was a significant factor in the isolation of old people. Lack of exercise and obesity seriously increased the risk of urinary infection; malnutrition and nutritional anaemia were found to be other potentially important problems in the elderly. In 13% of the elderly population three out of five seriously adverse factors (over 80, isolation, housebound, living alone, serious chronic Illness) were found to be present.

    It is imperative that the group of high-risk elderly should receive the services they need; it is suggested that a policy of an adequate sheltered area supported by a geriatric service should be an extension of group medical practice.

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