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This study sought to identify adaptation problems on the part of elderly persons and significant others that were associated with nursing home applications for elderly persons. Within the framework of the Roy Adaptation Nursing Model, an ex post facto research design was utilized to identify these adaptation problems. The four adaptive modes in this model are: physiological, selfconcept, role function, and interdependence. The study group (n= 22) and a control group of elderly persons living in Calgary, as well as their significant others, were administered a structured questionnaire.

Five hypotheses relating to overall adaptation problems, powerlessness, role reversal, guilt, and knowledge and utilization of services were formulated and tested. Only the hypothesis indicating role reversal on the part of the significant others w as accepted. Adaptation problems encountered by the elderly which were associated with nursing home applications occurred in the self-concept and interdependence adaptive modes. The adaptation problems perceived by the significant others, which were associated with nursing home applications for their elderly, occurred in the self-concept, role function, and interdependence modes. Adaptation problems from the significant others’ perception rather than from the elderly persons’ perception appear to be more significantly associated with nursing home applications.