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From The CriticsReviewer: Marquis D. Foreman, PhD, RN, FAAN (University of Illinois at Chicago College of Nursing)
Description: This book was written to assist all health professionals in dealing with the challenge in caring for older people — a challenge resulting from the inherently complex health problems which are inseparable form social relationships and circumstances.
Purpose: The purpose, according to the authors, is "to provide a guide for best practices and policies for the health care of older people.
Audience: The audience targeted by the authors includes, "clinical workers of all disciplines who work with older people," and health administrators and health policymakers.
Features: Seven chapters, an introduction, and an index comprise this book, covering the topics aging, illness, and disability; family and other informal caregivers; community social services; community health services; screening in general practice; hospital-community interface; and the future.
Assessment: This book is a disappointment. First, because of the brevity of each chapter, there is little detail and, as a result, the generalities with which topics are presented make the content superficial. Second, best practices is meant to convey the notion that the recommended practices are evidence or research based, when in fact very little research is cited in the references to each chapter. Third, the issues, solutions, and policies are exclusively British, and there has been no attempt to make them relevant to the U.S. healthcare system. Last, the content would appear relevant to all individuals, not just older people. For example, in the chapter about the hospital-community interface, providing high quality services for the elderly means they "are accessible, provide a spectrum of care, have a high quality staff, work with a multidisciplinary way, and are responsive." These are requisite qualities of care for all individuals!