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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 22  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 40-43

Health-care needs and morbidity profile of the elderly veterans and their dependents staying in an urban area:A cross-sectional study


1 Department of Internal Medicine, AFMC, Pune, Maharashtra, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, AFMC, Pune, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Lt Col Vivek Aggarwal
Department of Internal Medicine, AFMC, Pune, Maharashtra
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jmms.jmms_4_19

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Aim and Objectives: This study aimed to assess the morbidity profile and health care needs of elderly veterans and their elderly dependants residing in an urban gated society. Methodology: This cross -sectional observational study was done by house to house survey of veterans and their dependents more than 60 years residing in gated urban cooperative housing society. A predesigned questionnaire to assess the comorbidities (lifestyle diseases, geriatric syndromes, and reversible disabilities) and perceived health-care needs was administered. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics by SPSS 22 software. Results: Four hundred and six elderly veterans and their dependents were interviewed, which included 53.7% females. The mean age was 71.69 years. It was noted that 14.5% of the veterans were staying alone and required the help of a caregiver hired from outside. Chronic noncommunicable diseases (CNCDs) were common with more than 70% of veterans having two or more comorbidities. Hypertension was the commonest disease with a prevalence of 51.5% followed by diabetes (30.8%), decreased vision (28.6%), dental problems (25.1%), osteoarthritis (19.7%), and hearing impairment (18.7%). Only 4.2% of the subjects gave history of falls. Malignancy and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease were reported by 3% each. Dementia was prevalent in 14.5% of the subjects. The greatest felt needs of the elderly were: A separate geriatric outpatient clinic, availability of transport for elderly within the hospital, separate queues at the dispensary and blood collection centres, and a geriatric helpline. Conclusion: CNCDs were present in more than 80% of elderly subjects surveyed. Hypertension was the commonest comorbidity followed by diabetes. Potentially, treatable disabilities were seen in one-third of the veterans. Separate geriatric clinic, separate facility for dispensing medicine, and blood collection centers and a geriatric helpline were the most felt needs by the elderly veterans and their dependents.


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