Evaluation of the effectiveness of a care program for elderly patients with hip fractures: a network strategy

Abstract Objective: Evaluate the effectiveness of a care program for elderly persons with hip fractures due to a fall, based on a public network in Canoas, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Methods: a prospective cohort study of quantitative character was carried out. A total of 182 elderly person above 60 years diagnosed with hip fractures were included. The sample was divided into two groups, one who underwent their usual treatment (n=91) and another who were included in a care program for elderly persons with hip fractures (n=91). The program had as its main axis a clinical Protocol and an Access Protocol. The treatment of choice was surgical in all cases. In statistical analysis, categorical variables were described by absolute and relative frequencies. The Mann-Whitney test was used to compare numeric variables. In the comparison of proportions, the Pearson's Chi-squared test or Fisher's exact test were applied. The significance level adopted was 5%. Results: The average age was 79.4 years, with a prevalence of the female gender. The most frequent morbidity was hypertension. After the implementation of the program there was a reduction in the average time between the fracture and the beginning of surgery, the average length of hospitalization, the urinary tract infection rate, the death rate and care costs. Conclusion: The care program of elderly persons with hip fractures modified the expected results as it reduced mortality, average hospital stay, postoperative complications and the costs of treatment during the hospitalization.