To evaluate how the medical problems of older patients are managed in university-based internal medicine practices, the authors reviewed the medical records of 1,527 outpatients treated at 15 university teaching hospitals. Specific treatments for hypertension or diabetes had similar frequencies in patients 65 years of age and over and in patients under age 65. However, although the medical records mentioned hypertension in 43 percent and diabetes in 12 percent of the patients 65 or over, dementia and incontinence were recorded in only 0.4 percent and 2 percent, respectively. This finding suggests either that these elderly patients were extremely atypical or that their geriatric problems were unrecognized.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.
Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/research-integrity.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.