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Quality of Care and Mortality among Long-term Care Residents with Dementia

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R. Colin Reid


Seniors with dementia who enter long-term care facilities are at greater risk of death than are similar individuals that remain in the community. Previous research has focused primarily on social selection factors such as health status to explain mortality in this population. This study seeks to determine whether resident mortality within 12 months of admission to a facility can be explained by post-admission social causative factors, that is, by institutional quality of care. Logistic regression results are based on the study of 402 residents in 73 long-term care facilities throughout British Columbia, Canada. Mortality data were obtained from Vital Statistics. Although social selection factors (e.g., physical dependency) emerge as the strongest predictors, one social causative factor – facility level restraint use – also predicts mortality. This study provides some evidence that social causative factors play a role in determining mortality among long-term care residents with dementia. Further research on the social causative factors is needed to understand the degree to which they affect mortality, and the way in which they do so.

Resource: Canadian Studies in Population, Vol. 35.1, 2008, pp. 49-71