Time use by frail older people in different care settings

Rachel A. Pruchno, Miriam S. Rose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


The way in which time is used is an important aspect of the quality of life in long-term care settings. Time budget data for a 24-hour period were contrasted for 123 people living in a nursing home, in an assisted living facility, or in the community with home health services. Results indicate that the days of frail older people are largely spent alone and at home. Obligatory activities account for 38.6% of the day, whereas discretionary activities account for 59.7%. Time spent in activities varies as a function of personal characteristics, environmental context, and social context. Although there are differences across these settings, there are also striking similarities, particularly with respect to social context and satisfaction with the day. These data suggest that there is no one optimal living environment for frail older people and that traditional long-term care environments may be preferable for some.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-23
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Applied Gerontology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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