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APPropriate CARE paths for frail elderly patients


Appropriate care paths for frail elderly patients. A comprehensive model

The progressively ageing population is completely changing the systems of care, determining very critical situations both for the subjects taking advantage from the treatments and those who provide adequate responses. For this reason, in this period, a trustworthy cultural commitment is needed, in order to propose new organized systems which are able to adequately comply with the needs determined by demography and epistemology. At the same time it is necessary to promote accurate tests which could confirm the utility (or not) of the supposed projects for the health of elderly people, in regard both the local support and the hospital.

The APPCARE project – which involves three countries: Italy, Spain and The Netherlands – seeks to analyse the ways to reduce hospital admissions, in particular the recurring ones. This can be done through a process of selection of the patients the very moment they enter the emergency room and through adequate local interventions, which could allow to face many health problems without hospitalizing, that always represents a stressful and risky situation for the elderly. One of the innovative aspects of the project is the analysis of the efficacy of the insertion of a Brief Intensive Observation in the services network, working as a filter for the hospital admission and as a link with the territory.

The APPCARE project is inspired by some fundamental principles:

  1. the importance of the “defragmentating care” of the treatments offered, so that the experts that operate in the different segments of the network could provide coordinated interventions;
  2. the need to adopt the multidimensional geriatric evaluation as a precondition of intervention: an important instrument to reveal the need, avoiding inadequacies due to the lacking knowledge in the realms of the intervention (from the biologic-clinic to the psychosocial ones);
  3. the need to create paths based on homogeneous data; therefore, the instruments of analysis should be similar in the different places where the elder patient resides and where treatments are offered;
  4. the attention both to the single frail person and the caregiver, whose role for the achievement of the health equilibrium is getting more and more essential, since the changing in the epidemiology and in the family structure;
  5. the need for an adequate training of who operates at different levels, in order to define and share methods of work and to decide the outcome to reach both at the level of the single segment and in general;
  6. the parameters of economic compatibility have always to be at the center of any intervention; in fact, an integrated therapy leads to saving money. However, the interventions should be analysed extensively in order to avoid the lowering of the qualitative level.

The points above-named have to be taken into consideration when discussing the main aim of the study: to show how elder patients who suffer from multipatology and frailty could avoid the loss of self-sufficiency and the reduction of the curve of decay speed, intervening on the relation desease-disability. Everything deals with an innovative logic of prevention, therapy and rehabilitation, for which the biological aspects are strictly integrated with the clinical, social and relational ones.

The final aim of APPCARE is to show that the great social problem of the frail elderly can be handled as long as innovative methodologies are adopted, respecting the individual rights and the choices of each person. The most important innovation is the recognition, on a scientific level, that to deeply modify the current critical situation – which leads to serious risks for frail elder people – is actually possible.


Registration is open for the APPCARE Final Event to be held in Brussels on May 23rd 2019!

24 April 2019

Registration is open for the APPCARE Final Event to be held in Brussels on May 23rd 2019! For more information, please visit:

Round table “How to integrate project results to promote active and healthy ageing?” call for contribution!

24 April 2019

Round table “How to integrate project results to promote active and healthy ageing?” call for contribution! In the framework of the APPCARE Final Conference, a round table is organized to discuss how findings and recommendations of different projects in the field of Active and Healthy Ageing may be integrated in […]


3 July 2017

On june 9th 2017, the mid-term event of the APPCARE project took place in Valencia in the framework of the Transferring EU public policy into Regional social innovation: improving AHA for a better society workshop. This joint event with representatives of public administrations and experts of different projects working on […]

The APPCARE project will be presented during the 17° AIP (Associazione Italiana di Psicogeriatria) National Congress

6 December 2016

Florence, 30th March–1st April 2017 The symposium “Modalità innovative per la continuità delle cure nell’anziano. Il progetto APPCARE” [“Innovative modalities for the continuity of care in the elderly. The APPCARE project”] will take place on 30th March 2017 at 10 a.m. Click the following link  to consult the up-to-date […]

D 5.1 APPCARE model is now available for consultation!

6 December 2016

Deliverable D4.1 Eu Synthesis Report published

26 November 2015

Issue: November 9, 2015 Marjolein Lugtenberg, Elena Procaccini, Elisa Valia, Choni Doñate, Tamara Alhambra, Francesco Mattace Raso, Rob van Staveren, Carmen Franse, Amy van Grieken, Hein Raat (editors) Erasmus MC – University Medical Center Rotterdam, The Netherlands, Azienda ULSS n.9 Treviso, Italy, Polibienestar, Spain.

The APPCARE project

4 November 2015

APPropriate CARE paths for frail elderly patients – which involves three countries: Italy, Spain and The Netherlands is on line!

European Union

This publication is part of the project / joint action ‘664689 / APPCARE’ which has received funding from the European Union’s Health Programme (2014-2020).

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