European Geriatric Medicine

, Volume 10, Issue 1, pp 135–139 | Cite as

Who are the main medical care providers of European nursing home residents? An EuGMS survey

  • Donal FitzpatrickEmail author
  • Ólafur Samúelsson
  • Iva Holmerová
  • Finbarr C. Martin
  • Desmond O’Neill
  • On behalf of the Special Interest Group for Long-Term Care of the EUGMS
Brief Report



Nursing home residents are complex, vulnerable and have been historically neglected. The EuGMS is committed to improving their care, and is currently developing a curriculum of core competencies. Integral to these efforts is identifying the physicians, for whom, education in these competencies needs to be directed.


A survey was distributed to European national geriatrics societies, asking members their perceptions of proportions of nursing home medical care delivered by various physician specialties, and the main functions carried out in nursing homes.


Responses were received from 22 of 32 national geriatrics societies. The vast majority of care (estimated at 69%), is delivered by general practitioners, rather than geriatricians or specialist nursing home physicians. Nursing homes have acquired important roles in rehabilitation, respite and palliative care.


Education and training to achieve the highest standards of care must be designed for general practitioners who do not have specialist training. Education and infrastructure must be developed for the evolving roles of nursing homes.


Nursing homes Standards of care Education General practitioners European 


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

The survey did not involve any intervention with human or animal participants.

Informed consent

For this type of study, informed consent is not required.


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Copyright information

© European Geriatric Medicine Society 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Ageing, Neuroscience and the HumanitiesTrinity College DublinDublinIreland
  2. 2.Department of Geriatric MedicineLandspitali University HospitalReykjavikIceland
  3. 3.Centre of Expertise in Longevity and Long-Term Care, Faculty of HumanitiesCharles University and Centre of Gerontology PraguePragueCzech Republic
  4. 4.Population Health SciencesKing’s CollegeLondonUK

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