Functional Decline

Functional Decline is a worsening in physical and/or mental ability. Functional Decline can cause an inability to take care of yourself in day-to-day life such as dressing, toileting, taking medications and bathing. Functional Decline can be a result of hospitalization, severe illness, extended bed-rest and reduced participation in daily activities.

  • Assessment

    There are many tools that healthcare providers use to measure day-to-day functioning of their patients. These tools check functioning and performance of daily living activities such as bathing, dressing, toileting, medication use, shopping and finances.

  • Treatment

    Here are a number of strategies used by hospitals to positively impact the function and quality of life in older adult patients:
    • Checking physical, psychological and functional status at admission
    • Encouraging activity during hospitalization such as exercise and rehabilitation therapies
    • Avoiding bed rest orders
    • Minimizing/avoiding use of physical restraints and use of mobility restricting devices such as indwelling catheters
    • Optimizing nutrition and hydration
    • Obtaining medication history
    • Starting early functional goal setting and discharge planning with patient and family
    • Implement picture systems to improve communication among all parties involved in the care and help patients with mental impairments to perform daily living activities independently

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Functional Decline Links:

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