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Functional assessment of an elderly man at home
According to NHS (2011), elderly people who have attained the age of 65 years and above usually spend an average of 10 hours and above daily sitting or lying down, making them the most sedentary group of people. Due to this apparent inactivity among the elderly, they are more prone to accidental falls, obesity, cardiovascular accidents, heart conditions and sudden death than the general population. In this interview, data was gathered from an elderly man in his early 80s through use of a semi-structured interview schedule that consisted of open-ended questions touching on the instrumental activities of daily living (IADL) and activities of daily living (ADL). The interview schedule provided an opportunity for the interviewer and interviewee to tackle the questions in detail through appropriate probing.
Before commencement of the interview, an informed consent was obtained from the respondent where his anonymity and the confidentiality of the information sought from him were assured. The interviewee was asked to sign a consent form if he agreed to take part in the interview. The Rationale
To ascertain that a person is able to independently live at home or community, the determination of the daily basic activities performed by the individual is necessary. These activities are referred to as Activities of Daily Living (ADLs). According to PayingForSeniorCare (2007), ADLs only serve as a yardstick of independence of individuals, whether or not they perform these basic activities on their own or get assistance. On the other hand, Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADLs) are the actions which are important but not a daily requirement for one to live independently. They usually used to determine what level of assistance is to be accorded to the elderly or disabled people in society. In the interview schedule, three (3) ADLs and Three (3) IADLs were included. The ADLs included: Bed mobility, Toileting, and Eating. The IADLs were: Responsibility for own medication, Housekeeping, and Ability to use telephone. These activities and actions were included in the interview because they will in the very least point to the functional ability of the respondent given his advanced age. ADLs and IADLs are carried out because ‘ Measuring an individual’s ability to perform the ADLs and IADLs is important not just in determining the level of assistance required but as a metric for a variety of services and programs related to caring for the elderly and for those with disabilities (PayingForSeniorCare (2007, p. 1). Ethical considerations
According to Fouka and Mantzorou (2011, p. 3), research ethics involve requirements on daily work, the protection of dignity of subjects and the publication of the information in the research. Research ethics are a set of principles that guide researchers and research organizations on how to conduct themselves when dealing with research participants, other researchers and colleagues, the users of their research and society in general. Among the ethical issues taken into consideration in research include: 1. Informed consent
Informed consent is a major ethical issue in carrying out research. According to Armiger (1997), the participant must knowingly, voluntarily and intelligently, and in a clear and manifest way, give his/her consent. Informed consent confers autonomy to the respondent hence they are protected through self-determination. Through informed consent, the participant’s integrity, personal liberties and veracity are protected from violation by researchers. Informed consent enables individuals participate in research voluntarily after they have been provided with information on the potential risks and benefits of the research. Free and informed consent should incorporate an...
References: Armiger, B. (1997). Ethics in Nursing Research: Profile, Principles, Perspective. Nursing Research, vol. 26, no. 5, pp. 330-333.
Burns, N & Grove, S. (2005). The practice of nursing research: Conduct, critique, and utilization (5th ed.), St. Louis, Mo: Elsevier/ Saunders.
Fauka, G & Mantzorou, M. (2011). What are the major ethical issues in conducting research? Is there a conflict between the research ethics and the nature of nursing? Health Science Journal, 5(1), pp. 3-14.
Quinn, J, McArthur, Ellis, G & Stott, J. (2011). Functional assessment of older people. BMJ. doi: doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.d4681
Treece, E & Treece, J. (1982). Elements of research in Nursing. St-Louis: Mosby.
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