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A prospective study of unmet activity of daily living needs in palliative care inpatients

Authors

  • Lalitha Jeyasingam,

    1. Department of Palliative and Supportive Services, Flinders University, Bedford Park, South Australia,
    2. Southern Adelaide Palliative Services, Repatriation General Hospital, Daw Park, South Australia,
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  • Meera Agar,

    1. Department of Palliative and Supportive Services, Flinders University, Bedford Park, South Australia,
    2. Sydney South-West Area Palliative Care Service, Prairiewood, New South Wales,
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  • Michael Soares,

    1. Southern Adelaide Palliative Services, Repatriation General Hospital, Daw Park, South Australia,
    2. Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, Hospital Avenue, Nedlands, Western Australia, Australia
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  • John Plummer,

    1. Pain Management Unit, Flinders Medical Centre, Bedford Park, South Australia, and
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  • David Currow

    1. Department of Palliative and Supportive Services, Flinders University, Bedford Park, South Australia,
    2. Southern Adelaide Palliative Services, Repatriation General Hospital, Daw Park, South Australia,
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  • Lalitha Jeyasingam MBBS, MPC; Palliative Care Physician. Meera Agar MPC, FRACP; Consultant Registrar. Michael Soares BSc(OT), MBBS; Medical Resident. John Plummer PhD, Astat; Chief Medical Scientist. David Currow MPH, FRACP; Professor.

David C Currow, Department of Palliative and Supportive Services, Flinders University, 700 Goodwood Road, Daw Park, SA 5041, Australia. Email: david.currow@rgh.sa.gov.au

Abstract

Aim: To define the unmet needs of activities of daily living as defined by patients and caregivers in a palliative care inpatient unit.

Methods: A cross-sectional prevalence study of a convenience cohort of a dyad of patient/caregiver. Functional status and unment needs were assessed. Agreement between respondents was analysed.

Results: Caregivers identified significantly more unmet needs than patients (2.5 vs 2.5; p = 0.03). Areas of unmet need included mobility, leisure and bathing.

Conclusion: Routine screening for unmet needs in function should be part of all inpatient palliative care assessments.

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