Geriatric Assessment Essay

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Describe the elements of a comprehensive health assessment of a geriatric patient. What special considerations should the nurse keep in mind while performing this assessment? Nurses and healthcare professionals need to pay close attention to different things while performing a comprehensive assessment on the older population. The comprehensive assessment includes mental and functional status, social and economic status and the actual assessment of the body functions (Jarvis, 2012). It’s important to observe mental status changes and functional status changes, this can determine how well the patient can take care of themselves and deal with their health promotion on their own. Altered cognition is not a normal part of aging and the nurse may need to pay close attention to the possibilities of the onset of dementia. Activities of daily living include everything we do during our normal day to properly take care of ourselves and as we get older these tasks may become more difficult. Nurses need to assess how well a patient can see or hear, vision and hearing loss can be quite debilitating to performing ADL’s and it’s the nurses job to make sure our patient is in a safe environment and that they have proper vision/hearing care with proper strength prescriptions for their glasses or hearing assessments. It is very important to remember that hearing and vision loss is normal with aging and that when we perform our assessments we should talk slowly and annunciate clearly so the patient can understand any direction or education that is given (GCU, 2012). While observing the skin, it is most important to check for skin break down and this is most often seen with patients in long term care facilities or in the hospital setting but can be seen in the outpatient side, most likely a patient that does not ambulate very much or is wheelchair bound. Poor wound healing or

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