Development, feasibility and performance of a health risk appraisal questionnaire for older persons

Stuck, Andreas E; Kharicha, Kalpa; Dapp, Ulrike; Anders, Jennifer; von Renteln-Kruse, Wolfgang; Meier-Baumgartner, Hans Peter; Harari, Danielle; Swift, Cameron G; Ivanova, Katja; Egger, Matthias; Gillmann, Gerhard; Higa, Jerilyn; Beck, John C; Iliffe, Steve (2007). Development, feasibility and performance of a health risk appraisal questionnaire for older persons. BMC Medical research methodology, 7, p. 1. London: BioMed Central 10.1186/1471-2288-7-1

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BACKGROUND: Health risk appraisal is a promising method for health promotion and prevention in older persons. The Health Risk Appraisal for the Elderly (HRA-E) developed in the U.S. has unique features but has not been tested outside the United States. METHODS: Based on the original HRA-E, we developed a scientifically updated and regionally adapted multilingual Health Risk Appraisal for Older Persons (HRA-O) instrument consisting of a self-administered questionnaire and software-generated feed-back reports. We evaluated the practicability and performance of the questionnaire in non-disabled community-dwelling older persons in London (U.K.) (N = 1090), Hamburg (Germany) (N = 804), and Solothurn (Switzerland) (N = 748) in a sub-sample of an international randomised controlled study. RESULTS: Over eighty percent of invited older persons returned the self-administered HRA-O questionnaire. Fair or poor self-perceived health status and older age were correlated with higher rates of non-return of the questionnaire. Older participants and those with lower educational levels reported more difficulty in completing the HRA-O questionnaire as compared to younger and higher educated persons. However, even among older participants and those with low educational level, more than 80% rated the questionnaire as easy to complete. Prevalence rates of risks for functional decline or problems were between 2% and 91% for the 19 HRA-O domains. Participants' intention to change health behaviour suggested that for some risk factors participants were in a pre-contemplation phase, having no short- or medium-term plans for change. Many participants perceived their health behaviour or preventative care uptake as optimal, despite indications of deficits according to the HRA-O based evaluation. CONCLUSION: The HRA-O questionnaire was highly accepted by a broad range of community-dwelling non-disabled persons. It identified a high number of risks and problems, and provided information on participants' intention to change health behaviour.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of General Internal Medicine (DAIM) > Geriatric Clinic
04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine (ISPM)

UniBE Contributor:

Stuck, Andreas; Egger, Matthias and Gillmann, Gerhard






BioMed Central




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:53

Last Modified:

30 Dec 2014 09:58

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URI: (FactScience: 34673)

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