The Reshaping Care for Older People programme and changes in unscheduled hospital care: Analysis of routinely collected hospital data


      • The Scottish Government devised the Reshaping Care for Older People programme.
      • The rate of older people’s emergency admissions to hospital fell during the course of the programme.
      • Alongside this, this study describes increases in mean length of stay.
      • Overall, however, the number of emergency bed days reduced.
      • These reductions were seen across all quintiles of deprivation.



      This study examines mean length of stay (LOS) and rates of emergency bed days during the course of the Reshaping Care for Older People (RCOP) programme in Glasgow City.


      An ecological small-area study design was used. Standardised monthly rates of bed days and LOS were calculated, between April 2011 and March 2015, for residents of Glasgow City aged 65 years and over. Multilevel negative binomial models for the square root of each outcome nested by datazone were created, adjusting for sex, 5-year age group, area-level deprivation, season, month and month squared. Relative index of inequality (RII) and slope index of inequality (SII) were calculated for each year and the trend was examined.


      The rate of bed days first rose then fell during the study period, while LOS first fell then rose. Relative risk (RR) of an additional bed day was greater for males (RR = 1.14 (1.12, 1.16)) and increased with increasing age group. There was no gender difference in LOS. Bed days per head of population first increased then fell; for 12-month period RR = 1.01 (0.98, 1.05) and for 12-month period squared, RR = 0.999 (0.999, 0.999). RII and SII for rate of bed days per head of population were significant, though not for LOS. SII for bed days per head of population did not change significantly over time, while RII reduced at the 87% level of confidence.


      The results suggest a reduction in secondary care use by older people during the RCOP programme, and a possible reduction in socioeconomic inequalities in bed days in the longer term.


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