How to optimize interfaces between care settings for older patients?
International Journal of Integrated Care, 31 December 2009 - ISSN 1568-4156
Conference abstract
How to optimize interfaces between care settings for older patients?
Adelheid Susanne Esslinger, PD, Dr., University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany
Ria Schwegmann, Diplom-Kauffrau, University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany
Jens Trögner, Chefarzt Dr. med., University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany
Hans-Jürgen Heppner, Oberarzt Dr., University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany
Correspondence to: Susanne Esslinger, E-mail:

Purpose: Integrated care for older people is becoming more and more important. The purpose of this presentation is to detect influencing factors regarding the interface between ambulatory care and a geriatric day hospital.

Quality of care: The coordination between different professions in integrated care is a critical success factor for the quality of care. We assume that this quality is, besides other factors, influenced by

– Communication skills,

– Time for information exchange and

– Continuity of therapy and medication.

Method: We sent a standardized questionnaire to 476 practitioners and asked about their experiences in cooperation with the local geriatric day hospital in 2006. Eighty-six of the professionals responded (18.1%). Statistical analysis was conducted using SPSS and Excel.

Results and discussion: Overall most of the practitioners are satisfied with the cooperation and 90% will continue the interaction. Eighty-six percent share the opinion that the interaction is very good concerning time. A weak point is communication between professionals and access by phone. Difficulties exist in the case of an emergency, in evening care and at night. Challenges in the interface are therapy and medication. Because of the different budget systems practitioners discontinue therapy and medication, which was introduced in the day hospital.

The results underline the relevance of coordinating interface activities. Communication is a prominent success factor between partners in integrated care arrangements.

interfaces; care for older people

Presentation slides