Reablement in community-dwelling older adults: A randomised controlled trial
In this first randomised controlled trial on reablement conducted in Europe, reablement was shown to be a superior intervention than usual care.
Authors: Hanne Tuntland, Mona Kristin Aaslund, Birgitte Espehaug, Oddvar Førland and Ingvild Kjeken
There has been an increasing interest in reablement in Norway recently and many municipalities have implemented this form of rehabilitation despite a lack of robust evidence of its effectiveness. The aim of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of reablement in home-dwelling older adults compared with usual care in relation to daily activities, physical functioning, and health-related quality of life.
This is a parallel-group randomised controlled trial conducted in a rural municipality in Norway. Sixty-one home-dwelling older adults with functional decline were randomised to an intervention group or a control group. The intervention group received ten weeks of multicomponent home-based rehabilitation. The Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM) was used to measure self-perceived activity performance and satisfaction with performance. In addition, physical capacity and health-related quality of life were measured. The participants were assessed at baseline and at 3- and 9-month follow-ups.
There were significant improvements in mean scores favouring reablement in COPM performance at 3 months, at 9 months and overall treatment, and for COPM satisfaction at 9 months and overall treatment. No significant group differences were found concerning COPM satisfaction at 3 months, physical capacity or health-related quality of life.
A 10-week reablement program resulted in better activity performance and satisfaction with performance on a long-term basis, but not the other outcomes measured. The intervention was given to a frail, elderly population, who still showed improvement despite no extra time recourse being allocated.