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Keywords:

  • home care nursing;
  • Korean older people;
  • long-term care;
  • survey

Aim.  This paper reports a study exploring willingness to use home care nursing services among older people and discussing the implications for long-term and home care nursing policies.

Background.  The proportion of older people is increasing in all societies across the world. Correspondingly, Korean society has experienced a rapid growth in its population of older people, and this is expected to increase from 7·2% in 2000 to 14·4% in 2019. The government is in the process of developing publicly-financed long-term care for older people, and home care nursing services are expected to be provided as an element of this care.

Methods.  A cross-sectional study design was used, employing data from a nationally representative interview survey with 1834 respondents conducted during May and July, 2001. Univariate and logistic regression analyses were conducted.

Results.  Willingness to use home care nursing services differed according to whether co-payment was required. About half the respondents answered that they would not use the services; 43% expressed a willingness to use them without co-payment; and 5% were very willing to use them even with co-payment. People with lower incomes showed greater willingness to use the services with no co-payment, while the high income group showed the greatest willingness under co-payment. Sex, living with adult children, living area, activities of daily living, and chronic conditions were associated with willingness. Older people who had known about or used home care nursing services previously showed greater willingness.

Conclusions.  Co-payment guidelines for minimizing unmet needs are required, especially for older people with low incomes. A positive evaluation from those who knew about or had used such services is expected to contribute to the use of home care nursing services by older people.