Analysis of Long Term Care in the Context of Social and Health Services in Social Institutional Facilities in Slovakia

By Lezovic, Mário | Central European Journal of Public Health, September 2009 | Go to article overview

Analysis of Long Term Care in the Context of Social and Health Services in Social Institutional Facilities in Slovakia


Lezovic, Mário, Central European Journal of Public Health


SUMMARY

Objectives: Long-term care for people with chronic illnesses and disabilities present an urgent challenge around the world. Existing systems of care, which typically rely on unpaid family members, are not by themselves enough to meet growing demands. This analysis includes survey on the structure of services provided in selected social facilities in Slovakia.

Methods: The survey on structure of provided services includes social facilities providing services to the target groups involved in this analysis: Elderly people in retirement age; Disabled and chronically ill citizens in working age. For data collection from social facilities we used questionnaire method. The data were obtained from the managements of these facilities (n=405).

Results: In social facilities, the age range of clients was 76-85 years (31%); the length of stay of a patient in a social facility was in 36% patients 11 years and longer. The most frequently performed activities in employees were related to services and activities (31%) and social care (30%). For 52% social facilities is waiting time 1 year and longer. The length of stay of patient in social facilities is affected in 83% by combination of health and social problems and as to the diagnosis structure the most prevalent conditions are ischemic heart diseases, heart attack, hypertension (39%), locomotor disease (36%). In 2006 the budget resources of social facilities were in 72% contributions from the state budget.

Conclusion: Long-term care is closely interlinked with other programmes and systems, which can reduce the need for long-term care or which complement it.

Key words: elderly people, chronically ill, long term care, social care, health care, health services

INTRODUCTION

Throughout the developed world, numbers and proportions of elderly people are growing rapidly (1). The aging population is currently one of the main issues facing international health care systems. It is a recognized fact that with advancing age, the likelihood of developing health problems and chronic disease will increase and the demand for health care resources will escalate. This will impact hospitals and long-term care facilities (2). In industrialized societies, the ageing process represents one of the major public health concerns, both for ensuring an adequate level of care to satisfy today's needs as well as for ensuring the system's sustainability in the near future (3). The high costs of treating chronic diseases suggest that reducing their prevalence would improve Medicare's financial stability. The formulation of policies needs to reflect these countries' unique conditions (4). Individuals need long-term care (LTC) due to disability, chronic condition, trauma or illness, which limit their ability to carry out their daily basic self care or personal tasks. Long-term care refers to the provision of services for persons of all ages who have long-term functional dependency (5-10). This analysis includes survey on the structure of services provided in selected social care facilities.

METHODS

The survey on structure of provided services includes social facilities providing services to the target groups involved in this analysis: Elderly people in retirement age; Disabled and chronically ill citizens in working age. On the basis of the "target group" criterion the questionnaires were sent to Providers of social services: Retirement homes or retirement homes in combination with social service homes; Selected personal care service facilities and Social service homes for disabled adults: mental, physical, sensory or combined impairment. For data collection from social facilities we use questionnaire method. The data was obtained from the managements of these facilities which total 405 in Slovakia. The register of social facilities was acquired from The Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Family of the Slovak Republic (valid as of January 2007). …

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