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Articles by R. A. Kenny
Total Records ( 2 ) for R. A. Kenny
  R Romero Ortuno , L Cogan , C. U Cunningham and R. A. Kenny

Background: the safety of older pedestrians at urban intersections is a matter of gerontological concern. Many older pedestrians report inability to complete crossings in the time given by pedestrian lights. Standard times for pedestrian lights in Dublin pelican crossings are specified in the Traffic Management Guidelines (TMG). The Technology Research for Independent Living Centre is building a database of gait assessments of Irish community-dwelling older people using GAITRiteTM.

Objective: to compare the usual walking speed of our participants against that required by the TMG.

Design: cross-sectional observational study.

Setting: comprehensive geriatric assessment outpatient clinic.

Subjects: 355 community-dwelling older subjects aged ≥60 assessed between August 2007 and September 2008 (mean age 72.7, SD 7.2).

Methods: linear regression analysis between age and observed walking speed, followed by comparison of predicted walking speeds at four different ages (i.e. 60, 70, 80 and 89) against minimum walking speeds required to cross standard Irish roads when regulated by the pelican system.

Results: age and walking speed had a strong inverse correlation F (1, 353) = 108.48, P < 0.001, R2 = 0.235. The regression predicted a walking speed of 1.30 m/s (95% confidence interval 1.24–1.35) at the age of 60, 1.10 (1.07–1.13) at 70, 0.91 (0.87–0.94) at 80 and 0.73 (0.66–0.80) at 89. Against these predicted walking speeds, standard crossing times appeared insufficient for very old people.

Conclusions: as currently defined in the TMG, maximum pedestrian crossing times at pelican crossings may represent a hazard for very old people. This should be addressed within the Irish authorities’ plan to improve safety and equality for older people.

  P. M Kearney , H Cronin , C O'Regan , Y Kamiya , B. J Whelan and R. A. Kenny

Background: some cohort studies of ageing and health supplement questionnaire-based surveys with in-home measurements of biological parameters and others have required respondents to attend assessment centres. Centre-based assessments facilitate detailed measurements and novel technologies, but may differentially influence participation. The aim of this paper is to compare the characteristics of participants who attended a centre with those who chose a home assessment and those who did not have a health assessment.

Methods: trained field workers administered a computer-assisted personal interview (CAPI) to a random sample of community-dwelling people aged 50 and over in the participants' homes. All questionnaire respondents were invited to attend an assessment centre for a comprehensive physical assessment. Participants who refused or were unable to attend a centre were offered a home assessment.

Results: of the 291 participants who completed the CAPI, 176 had a health assessment: 138 in an assessment centre and 38 in their own home. The centre, home and no visit respondents differed in demographic characteristics, behavioural factors, physical functioning and health. Lower socio-economic status, physical inactivity and current smoking were the most robust predictors of non-participation in the health assessment. Home respondents had the highest levels of physical disability and were much weaker (grip strength) and slower (walking speed) than centre respondents.

Conclusion: home and centre physical assessments are required to avoid systematically over-representing healthier and wealthier respondents.

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