The effect of community based daycare on mental health and quality of life of elderly in rural south India: a community intervention study




Sustainable cost-effective interventions to improve psychiatric morbidity and quality of life among the elderly have not been systematically evaluated in developing countries.


The most vulnerable elderly living in Pennathur, Vellore district, India, in terms of socioeconomic status and social supports, were invited to participate in a day-care program. Baseline assessments were done using the Mini Mental Status Examination, the Revised Clinical Interview Schedule and the World Health Organisation Quality of Life- Bref. Follow-up assessment was done at 3 months on subjects who took part and those who refused.

Results and conclusions

Forty-one (16.4%) were invited to take part. Twenty subjects took part in the program while 21 refused. There was a significant reduction in psychiatric morbidity and improvement in quality of life scores at 3 months for subjects who attended the program. The improvement in quality of life persisted after adjusting for gender, socioeconomic status and baseline scores. Costing of the program suggests sustainability. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.