Funcionalidade e vulnerabilidade em pessoas idosas : implicações para os cuidados de enfermagem

Research output: Types of ThesisDoctoral Thesis


Introduction: The policy of non-institutionalization of dependent elderly people, started in the 70’s, gave rise to the creation of Day Centers, social facilities that are exempt from providing health services to support aging, contrary to the best evidence that advises interdisciplinary involvement. Objective: To trace the profile related to the functionality of the elderly attending the Day Centers of the city of Porto and identify the transitions that require professional responses potentially sensitive to nursing care. Methods: The research followed a mixed design. First a multiple case study that characterized the individual vulnerability associated with the transition process to the Day Center; this was followed by an observational, analytical, cross-sectional study with a representative sample of the population of the Day Centers of the city of Porto, which determined the extent of functional deficits and explored the relationships between the phenomena sensitive to Nursing care; finally, an observational, analytical, longitudinal study with a sample of 55 people, characterizing the evolution of the functionality over two years of permanence in the Day Center. Results: People resort to social support after a progressive period of functional decline or a critical event that generates dependency. The inability to meet the self-care requirements independently and the unavailability to take care of the relatives, support the decision to join the Center. The beginning is not free of negative emotions but perceived social support helps the person to adapt to the dependent condition. The study of phenomena such as cognitive performance, sleep, pain, visual acuity, nutritional status, self-care, body balance, confidence to perform activities, physical exercise, management of the drug regimen, morbidity , use of health resources and self-perception of health, have shown that they are highly affected, negatively influencing the functionality. The evaluation of the functional profile over time proved the progressive decline in almost all the study areas. Conclusions: There are areas of Nursing Care-sensitive functionality that can be worked out in Day Care Centers. It is necessary to rethink the need to develop integrated responses focused on health promotion, maintenance and rehabilitation in the context of a Day Center to achieve the desired Ageing and Health advocated by the World Health Organization.
Original languagePortuguese
  • Vieira, Margarida Maria, Supervisor
Publication statusPublished - 2017

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