Geriatric attendance at Outpatients Department Addington Hospital, Durban.
This is a cross section study of the White elderly patients who attended Addington Hospital, Durban, Out-patient Department during a two week period in July 1985. Screening was by means of systematic sampling, a standard questionnaire was administered to 321 of them and their characteristics and needs were identified. In order to determine the attitudes of the medical and nursing staff who work in Addington Out-Patient Department, a further questionnaire was used. It was found that 88,37% of health professionals did not have a particular leaning towards looking after the elderly, but 88% agreed that the needs of the elderly were different in comparison with other age groups. 92,8% considered that geriatrics is a speciality in its own right. Recommendations are made for a 24 hour community geriatric service, the establishment of day centres to serve the needs of the greater Durban area, and for the establishment of a Chair of Geriatrics at the University of Natal.