Research Article

Consequences of assessment and intervention among elderly people: a three year randomised controlled trial.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1984; 289 doi: (Published 01 December 1984) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1984;289:1522
  1. C Hendriksen,
  2. E Lund,
  3. E Strømgård


    Over three years 285 randomly selected subjects aged 75 years or more and living in a suburb of Copenhagen were visited every three months in their own homes (the intervention group) to assess whether scheduled medically and socially preventive intervention would influence the number of admissions to hospitals or nursing homes, the number of contacts with general practice, or mortality. A randomly selected group of 287 people of the same age and sex were visited during the final three months of the study (the control group). Two hundred and nineteen admissions to hospitals (4884 bed days) were registered for the intervention group compared with 271 (6442 bed days) for the control group. Especially during the second half of the study, a significant reduction in the number of admissions to hospitals was seen in the intervention group. Twenty people in the intervention group and 29 in the control group moved into nursing homes (p greater than 0.05). The corresponding numbers of deaths were 56 and 75 (p less than 0.05). No difference was seen in the number of contacts with general practice. Significantly fewer emergency medical calls, however, were registered for the intervention group. Subjects in the intervention group benefited from the regular visits and the increased distribution of aids and modifications to their homes to which these led. The regular visits probably also produced an important increase in confidence.