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Care needs among the dependent population in Spain: an empirical approach

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The objective of the present paper was to identify the profile and needs of social and healthcare users in Spain who required long-term care. To achieve this goal, an extensive empirical study was carried out in 2001 of a typical southern European region: the Valencia Autonomous Region in Spain. The method used was a questionnaire-based survey. The data collection instrument was a questionnaire comprising 119 questions grouped into seven sections: social and demographic data; clinical diagnosis and treatment; living environment; degree of dependence in activities of daily living (ADLs); cognitive state; social support; and the social, demographic and attendance data of the carer, if available. The sampling was carried out in two strata, i.e. social and healthcare: first, the authors randomly selected the centres and services as sampling points, and then they randomly selected the subjects. A total of 1265 people were interviewed. The results show different care profiles: users aged under 65 years were mostly mentally ill and/or drug users requiring short- and medium-term care from the health services, while those aged over 65 years had chronic illnesses for which they were actively receiving treatment, were functionally dependent for ADLs, and were normally receiving social care that basically provided company and resolved functional limitations.
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Keywords: care needs; dependence; health care; long-term care; social care; social sustainability

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: ‘Poliwelfare’ Research Unit, Department of Social Work and Social Services, Universitat de València 2: ‘Poliwelfare’ Research Unit, Department of Science Education, Universitat de València, València, Spain

Publication date: November 1, 2004

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