888: Using the community-oriented primary care (COPC) model to improve the quality of life of elderly people who live alone in Kaita, Japan.

Conference: 
Author(s): 
Y. Osugi1, K. Kinjo1, S. Yoshida1, H. Ichinose1, Y. Honda1, H. Imura1, T. Sairenji2, M. Meyer2
1 Family Medicine, Iizuka-Kaita Family Medicine Residency Program, Iizuka, Japan; 2 Family Medicine, University of Pittsburgh Medical Centre Family Medicine Residency Program, Pittsburgh, United States
Text: 
Objective: The Japanese geriatric population is rapidly growing, with an expected increase of 37% by 2025 of those over 65 who live alone. Changes in the medical system are implemented to account for this growth, but less attention goes to their quality of life (QOL). Iizuka-Kaita and UPMC Family Medicine Residency Programs collaborated to improve the QOL of a targeted geriatric population in the Kaita region. Education regarding the COPC model was provided by UPMC, and progress was monitored via monthly internet meetings.
Methods: We moved through 3 stages of the COPC model: (1) defining the community, (2) identifying a problem, (3) developing an intervention. Our community was composed of 165 people over 75 and who live alone. Personal interviews and a focus-group discussion were conducted to identify their problems. A multi-disciplinary group comprised of stakeholders such as local administrators, community experts and volunteers helped implement the intervention. The next step: (4) monitoring the intervention is planned for upcoming community events.
Results: The community identified transportation issues as their main problem; they had difficulty getting to grocery stores and clinics. We found that resources exist, but are difficult to access and use, so we organized information and provided easy access so it could be utilized by our community.
Conclusion: This is one of the first COPC projects conducted in Japan. We predict that other communities in Japan will benefit from the development of this model, and from specific outcomes of this project.

Disclosure: No conflict of interest declared