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Older people's perspectives on an elderly-friendly hospital environment: an exploratory study

Authors Karki S, Bhatta DN, Aryal U

Received 17 February 2015

Accepted for publication 20 March 2015

Published 13 May 2015 Volume 2015:8 Pages 81—89


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 7

Editor who approved publication: Professor Frank Papatheofanis

Video abstract presented by Dharma Nand Bhatta

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Sushmita Karki,1 Dharma Nand Bhatta,1,2 Umesh Raj Aryal3

1Department of Public Health, Nobel College, Pokhara University, Kathmandu, Nepal; 2Faculty of Medicine, Epidemiology Unit, Prince of Songkla University, Songkhla, Thailand; 3Department of Community Medicine, Kathmandu Medical College, Kathmandu, Nepal

Background: Many older people are vulnerable with multiple health problems and need of extensive care and support for quality of life. The main objective of this study was to explore the older people's perspectives on an "elderly-friendly" hospital.
Methods: Hospital was stratified by four domains including government, semi-government, community, and private. We interviewed 33 hospitalized older patients and four hospital managers between June and December 2014 in Kathmandu, Nepal, using purposive sampling technique. We executed a qualitative content analysis step with extensive review of the interviews. Final name of the theme was given after the agreement between the research team and experts to improve trustworthiness. Elderly-friendly services, expectation from government and hospital, and health policy related to senior citizen were developed as main themes.
Results: Most of the participants were satisfied with the behavior of health personnel. However, none of the health personnel were trained with geriatric health care. Elderly-friendly hospital guidelines and policy were not developed by any hospitals. Older people health card, advocacy for older people's health and benefit, and hospital environment were the common expectations of older patients. Government policy and budget constraint were the main obstacles to promote elderly-friendly health care services.
Conclusion: Elderly-related health policies, physical environments of hospital, elderly-friendly health manpower, advocacy, and other facilities and benefits should be improved and developed. There are urgent needs to develop elderly-friendly hospital policies and guidelines that focus on older people's health benefits and friendly services.

Keywords: elderly-friendly hospital, older, policy, advocacy, hospital environment

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