Journals of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences
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The Journals of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences 55:S152-S162 (2000)
© 2000 The Gerontological Society of America


RESEARCH ARTICLE

The Transition From Home to Nursing Home Mortality Among People With Dementia

Carol S. Aneshensela, Leonard I. Pearlinb, Lené Levy-Stormsc and Roberleigh H. Schulera

a Department of Community Health Services, University of California, Los Angeles
b Department of Sociology, University of Maryland, College Park
c Department of Health Promotion and Gerontology, University of Texas, Medical Branch, Galveston

Carol S. Aneshensel, Department of Community Health Science, School of Public Health, Box 951772, University of California, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1772. Email: [email protected]

Objectives. This article examines the impact of nursing home admission on mortality among persons with dementia, comparing social selection and social causation explanations of excess deaths occurring immediately after relocation.

Methods. Data from a multiwave panel survey of caregivers to persons with Alzheimer's Disease are analyzed with proportional hazard models of time from illness onset to death of the care recipient and, for those admitted to a nursing home , time from admission until death .

Results. Relocation is associated with a two-fold increase in mortality risk net of health status. Social selection effects were found for poor health, advanced age, being male, and being White. Patients admitted for reasons other than poor health also experienced elevated mortality immediately following admission, which is inconsistent with a social selection interpretation. However, none of the specific indicators of stressful admission or unsatisfactory nursing home conditions are significantly related to mortality.

Discussion. These data demonstrate selection processes for postadmission mortality, but indicate that the admission of patients in poor health may not fully account for the elevation in mortality that occurs immediately following admission.







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