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Additional measures do not improve the diagnostic accuracy of the Hospital Admission Risk Profile for detecting downstream quality of life in community-dwelling older people presenting to a hospital emergency department

Authors Grimmer K, Milanese S, Beaton K, Atlas A, Kennedy K

Received 16 October 2013

Accepted for publication 25 November 2013

Published 23 January 2014 Volume 2014:9 Pages 233—242

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/CIA.S56086

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 4


K Grimmer, S Milanese, K Beaton, A Atlas

International Centre for Allied Health Evidence, University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA, Australia

Introduction: The Hospital Admission Risk Profile (HARP) instrument is commonly used to assess risk of functional decline when older people are admitted to hospital. HARP has moderate diagnostic accuracy (65%) for downstream decreased scores in activities of daily living. This paper reports the diagnostic accuracy of HARP for downstream quality of life. It also tests whether adding other measures to HARP improves its diagnostic accuracy.
Methods: One hundred and forty-eight independent community dwelling individuals aged 65 years or older were recruited in the emergency department of one large Australian hospital with a medical problem for which they were discharged without a hospital ward admission. Data, including age, sex, primary language, highest level of education, postcode, living status, requiring care for daily activities, using a gait aid, receiving formal community supports, instrumental activities of daily living in the last week, hospitalization and falls in the last 12 months, and mental state were collected at recruitment. HARP scores were derived from a formula that summed scores assigned to age, activities of daily living, and mental state categories. Physical and mental component scores of a quality of life measure were captured by telephone interview at 1 and 3 months after recruitment.
Results: HARP scores are moderately accurate at predicting downstream decline in physical quality of life, but did not predict downstream decline in mental quality of life. The addition of other variables to HARP did not improve its diagnostic accuracy for either measure of quality of life.
Conclusion: HARP is a poor predictor of quality of life.

Keywords: functional decline, HARP, quality of life, older people

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