The triage experiment in coordinated care for the elderly

Am J Public Health. 1981 Sep;71(9):991-1003. doi: 10.2105/ajph.71.9.991.


Triage is a model project designed to overcome the organizational and financial barriers inhibiting the provision of appropriate care to the elderly. Teams made up of a nurse clinician and a social worker performed assessment, service coordination, and monitoring functions. Services arranged by the teams were financed through a series of waivers on the use of the Medicare Trust Fund. Three hundred and seven Triage clients were followed and compared to a group of 195 elderly in a two year quasi-experimental study of functioning status outcomes, use of services, and health care costs. Triage clients had slightly better mental functioning outcomes than comparison clients; results of physical and social functioning outcomes were inconclusive. Both service utilization and costs were somewhat higher for Triage clients; the proportional difference in utilization was greater than the proportional difference in costs.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Emergency Medical Services / organization & administration*
  • Female
  • Health Services for the Aged / economics*
  • Health Services for the Aged / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Triage / organization & administration*