Prevalence of Cognitive Impairment Among Elderly Patients Upon Hospital Admission Using Mini-Cog™ Assessments Performed by Advanced Pharmacy Practice Experience Students

Nghi (Andy) Bui, Mobolaji Adeola, Rejena Azad, Joshua T. Swan, Kathryn S. Agarwal, Manvi Sharma, Michael G. Liebl, George Taffet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Older adults with cognitive impairment may have difficulty understanding and complying with medical or medication instructions provided during hospitalization which may adversely impact patient outcomes. Objective: To evaluate the prevalence of cognitive impairment among patients aged 65 years and older within 24 hours of hospital admission using Mini-Cog™ assessments performed by advanced pharmacy practice experience (APPE) students. Methods: Students on APPE rotations were trained to perform Mini-Cog™ assessments during routine medication education sessions from February 2017 to April 2017. The primary end point was the prevalence of cognitive impairment indicated by a Mini-Cog™ score of ≤3. Secondary end points were the average number of observed Mini-Cog™ practice assessments required for APPE students to meet competency requirements, caregiver identification, and 30-day hospital readmissions. Results: Twelve APPE students completed the training program after an average of 4.4 (standard deviation [SD] = 1.0) graded Mini-Cog™ assessments. Of the 1159 admissions screened, 273 were included in the analysis. The prevalence of cognitive impairment was 55% (n = 149, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 48%-61%). A caregiver was identified for 41% (n = 113, 95% CI: 35%-47%) of patients, and 79 patients had a caregiver present at bedside during the visit. Hospital readmission within 30 days of discharge was 15% (n = 41, 95% CI: 11%-20%). Conclusion: Cognitive impairment could substantially impair a patient’s ability to comprehend education provided during hospitalization. Pharmacy students can feasibly perform Mini-Cog™ assessments to evaluate cognitive function, thereby allowing them to tailor education content and involve caregivers when necessary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-29
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pharmacy Practice
Volume33
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2020

Keywords

  • Mini-Cog™
  • cognitive dysfunction
  • elderly
  • hospitalization
  • pharmacy education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)

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