Caregiving and institutionalization of cognitively impaired older people: Utilizing dynamic predictors of change

Joseph E. Gaugler, Robert L Kane, Rosalie A Kane, Ted Clay, Robert Newcomer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

196 Scopus citations


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to identify reliable predictors of nursing home entry over a 3-year period in a sample of 3,944 persons with dementia who resided in a home setting at baseline. Strengths of the analysis include a multiregional recruitment strategy, incorporation of salient caregiver characteristics, and a 3-year prospective design that allows for the modeling of change in important variables (e.g., care recipient functional status or caregiving indicators) when time to institutionalization is predicted. Design and Methods: Data were derived from the control sample of the Medicare Alzheimer's Disease Demonstration Evaluation (MADDE). A Cox proportional hazards model was used to predict time to institutionalization among individuals with dementia (baseline was enrollment into MADDE). Predictors included care recipient demographics, caregiver demographics, and timevarying measurements of care recipient functional status, caregiving indicators, and service utilization. Indicators of change were also incorporated to capitalize on the prospective data available. Results: Although several results were consistent with prior findings, caregiving indicators (i.e., burden and self-rated health) and community-based service use were significant predictors of earlier placement. Change in caregiver instrumental activities of daily living and care recipient activities of daily living were also related to expedited institutionalization. Implications: The findings emphasize the importance of incorporating both care recipient and caregiver function and service use patterns when targeting programs designed to prevent or delay institutionalization for people with dementia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)219-229
Number of pages11
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2003

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by New Investigator Research Grant NIRG-2249 from the Alzheimer’s Association to J. E. Gaugler and Grant 509-89-0069 from the Health Care Financing Administration to Robert Newcomer.


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Dementia
  • Family caregiving
  • Nursing home placement


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