Inactive elders in Portugal . . . and other stories

BMJ 2016; 355 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i6053 (Published 16 November 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;355:i6053

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Activity levels in older Europeans

Using the Survey of Health, Ageing, and Retirement in Europe database, investigators in Portugal found that their country ranked highest out of 16 for levels of inactivity in people over 54 (Age Ageing doi: 10.1093/ageing/afw165). The overall prevalence of inactivity across Europe is 12.5%, ranging from 4.9% in Sweden to 29% in Portugal. Physical inactivity was statistically significantly associated with increasing age, depression, physical limitations, poor sense of meaning in life, social support, and memory loss. Strange that inactivity should be greater in balmy Portugal than in chilly Sweden.

Ambulatory care sensitive conditions

Against a background of decreasing bed capacity, unplanned hospital admissions are seen as an increasing problem for the UK’s National Health Service. A study matching general practitioners’ practice data with hospital episode statistics finds a 55% variation in rates of acute admission …

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