“What are you interested in?”—A survey on 601 nursing homes residents activities interests


Lack of engagement in activities is a common feature of nursing homes residents. As apathy is the most frequent behavioural disturbance, understanding residents’ interests is a milestone for tailored challenging interventions targeting engagement enhancement. Objective: To depict the activities interests of nursing homes residents. Method: An electronic version of the Test of Interest “TILT” which regroups 40 images of activities has been developed and adapted for the Ipad. Residents were asked to answer by yes or no to the question “are you interested by this activity”, for each activity found interesting, the patient had then to categorize it in either Work/ occupation-Personal-Leisure-Family. Population: A total of 601 residents from 19 nursing homes have completed the survey from March to May 2011. The surveyed nursing homes from the South East of France were comparable of nursing homes figures in France. Results: We interviewed 601 individuals (female, n = 484) aged 85.9 years, out of those, 56% had stayed more than one year in an institution. Nearly half of the population (45.3%) was from 80 - 89 year of age, followed by 36.1% from 90 - 99. The educational background was principally from primary school (36%) and high school (30.8%). Most of the residents were classified has having dementia (35.3%). From the 40 activities presented to each participant, “enjoying a good meal” has been found to be the most interesting activity by 83% of the population followed by “dressing up”, 75.9% and “watching TV”, 75.5%. Female participants reported more interest in place of worship, family pictures and being with grand children then males (p < 0.01). We found that the presence of “dementia” diagnosis” triggered the lack of interest compared to none demented or none cognitively impaired residents (p < 0.01). It was found that participants aged 55 - 69 were more the most interested to do video games (p < 0.05), though this may be interpreted as a positive step toward functional and cognitive rehabilitation program using virtual reality as a mean for intervention.

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Leone, E. , Piano, J. , Deudon, A. , Alain, B. , Wargnier, A. , Balard, P. , Soriano, D. , Malléa, P. , Robert, P. and Dechamps, A. (2012) “What are you interested in?”—A survey on 601 nursing homes residents activities interests. Advances in Aging Research, 1, 13-21. doi: 10.4236/aar.2012.12002.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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