Comprehensive geriatric assessment (CGA) is a multidimensional and multidisciplinary diagnostic process focused on determining the clinical profile, pathological risk, residual skills, short- and long-term prognosis, and personalized therapeutic and care plan of the functionally compromised and frail older subjects. Previous evidence suggested that the effectiveness of CGA programs may be influenced by settings where the CGA is performed [i.e., hospital, posthospital discharge/long-term care facilities (LTCFs), or community/home] as well as the specific clinical conditions of older frail individuals. In this scenario, CGA and quality of care in LTCFs have been a challenge for decades. In the present article, we systematically reviewed evidence from the last three decades of clinical research devoted to systematic implementation of CGA programs in LTCFs, that is, nursing homes, care homes, residential homes, and rehabilitation facilities. In the United States, all LTC residents must undergo a CGA on a regular basis on admission to a facility, prompting the development of the Resident Assessment Instrument (RAI) Minimum Data Set, a specific CGA-based assessment tool in this population. In the LTCF setting, the present reviewed evidence suggested that most complex older subjects may benefit from a CGA in terms of improved quality of care and reduced hospitalization events and that CGA must be standardized across healthcare settings to promote greater health system integration and coordination. In the LTCF setting, particularly in nursing homes, other new and promising CGA programs have also been proposed to develop rapid screening CGA-based tools to enhance in the future the ability of primary care physicians to recognize and treat geriatric syndromes in this setting. However, at present, the interRAI suite of instruments represented an integrated health information system that has the potential to provide person-centered information transcending healthcare settings.
- Journal Article