Unmet care needs are common among community-dwelling older people with memory problems in Finland
Aaltonen, M. S., & Van Aerschot, L. H. (2021). Unmet care needs are common among community-dwelling older people with memory problems in Finland. Scandinavian Journal of Public Health, 49(4), 423-432. https://doi.org/10.1177/1403494819890800
Published inScandinavian Journal of Public Health
© 2021 Sage
Aims: Ageing in place has become a policy priority. Consequently, residential care has been reduced, and more older people with multiple care needs reside at home with the help of informal care and home care services. An increasing share of these people has memory disorders. We examined the extent to which memory problems, in addition to other individual characteristics, are associated with unmet care needs among community-dwelling older people. Methods: The study employed cross-sectional survey data from community-dwelling people aged 75+ collected in 2010 and 2015, analysed using binary logistic regression analysis. The study population consisted of people who had long-term illnesses or disabilities that limited their everyday activities (N = 1928). Nine per cent reported substantial memory problems. Of these, 35.7% had a proxy respondent. Results: People with memory problems have more care needs than those with other types of disability or illness. They receive more care but still have more unmet needs than others. About a quarter of people with memory problems reported that they did not receive enough help. This result did not change significantly when the proxy responses were excluded. Even a combination of informal and formal home care was insufficient to meet their needs. Conclusions: Insufficient care for people with memory problems implies a serious demand for further development of home care services. The care needs of this population are often complex. Unmet needs represent a serious risk to the well-being of people with memory disorders, and may also create an extensive burden on their informal caregivers. ...
PublisherSage Publications Ltd.
Publication in research information system
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Related funder(s)Research Council of Finland
Funding program(s)Centre of Excellence, AoF
Additional information about fundingThis work was supported by the Academy of Finland grant to the Centre of Excellence in Research on Ageing and Care (CoE AgeCare, number 312303) and Post-Doctoral Researcher grant to Mari Aaltonen (number 315985).
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