Online Program

Impact of unmet need on health status in community-dwelling older adults: An eight-year longitudinal study

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 : 5:18 p.m. - 5:30 p.m.

Yun-Yi Chen, College of Public Health, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan
Ya-Mei Chen, PhD, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan
Background: Research has shown that unmet need is related to a variety of negative consequences of the disabled older adults. However, the influence of unmet need on health status still needs to be investigated. Method: Using an eight-year longitudinal and population representative sample of community-dwelling older adults in Taiwan, we explored the impact of unmet needs for personal assistance with ADL, personal assistance with IADL, and access of healthcare on health status. Measures of health status include self-rated health (SRH), psychological distress, cognitive function, and levels of functional disability. Generalized estimating equations (GEE) models were employed, adjusted for sociodemographic factors (i.e. age, gender, marital status, household income, education level, urbanization of living areas), psychosocial factors (i.e. living arrangement and perceived social support), health conditions and number of chronic illness Result: Among 1389 disabled community-dwelling older adults, the presence of unmet ADL need and difficulties in accessing healthcare showed a significant association with poorer SRH, and higher levels of psychological distress, ADL disability and IADL disability, with covariates controlled. Moreover, unmet IADL need was only associated with poorer SRH and higher level of psychological distress. Yet, poorer cognition function is only related to difficulties of access to healthcare. Conclusion: This study underscored the importance of meeting unmet needs and improving access to care for promoting multidimensional well-being of older adult with disabilities.

Learning Areas:

Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Identify the influence of unmet need on health conditions. Explain the importance of unmet needs among disabled elderly.

Keyword(s): Disability Studies, Health Assessment

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to be an abstract author on the content because: I built the conceptual model, analyzed data, and wrote the abstract and manuscript with the co-author.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.