Editorials

The case for the community geriatrician

BMJ 1994; 308 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.308.6938.1184 (Published 07 May 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;308:1184
  1. J Morris

    Geriatric medicine has developed from being a specialty that concentrated mainly on caring for chronically sick patients in long stay wards to one that deals with one third of all adult medical admissions. Inpatient services are often backed up by day hospitals bridging the gap between hospital and the community.

    Many changes are underway. Between 1978-9 and 1992-3 the average length of stay in wards for older people fell from 77.5 days to 27 days. At the same time the number of people aged 85 and over who live in residential and nursing homes doubled. The introduction of social security support in 1983 for people in these homes (both voluntary and private) was responsible for the shift of many older people out of hospitals and into care homes.

    The implementation …

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