Date of Paper


Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)


Social Work

First Advisor

Robin R. Whitebird


Social Work


Chronic illness has a significant impact on the lives of older adults, both physically and psychologically. Exacerbations of chronic illness can lead to hospitalizations, which in themselves can be traumatizing for an older adult. An initial literature search indicated a significant relationship between hospitalizations and reports of anxiety, depression, and even symptoms of post-traumatic stress. The purpose of this research was to examine the relationship between the use of psychosocial interventions and decreased hospitalizations for older adults with chronic illness. Using a systematic search of CINAHL, Academic Search Premier, Health Source: Nursing/Academic Edition, Medline, and SocINDEX databases, eight articles were identified and thematically analyzed. Although various chronic illness care models were addressed in the research, the following psychosocial themes were identified as core components of a successful model: patient-centered care and education, interdisciplinary consultation, care management, and mental health counseling and support. The utilization of these interventions resulted in a number of positive outcomes, including decreased symptoms of depression, improved quality of life, and decreased hospitalizations. The results indicated that incorporating psychosocial aspects into chronic illness care models are, in fact, essential to producing positive outcomes for older adults.

Included in

Social Work Commons