Contact
1300 732 766

An online frailty test has been launched to help senior Australians maintain their independence, improve their health and stay stronger for longer.

The five-point online test was developed following an Australian study, funded by the Australian Government and conducted by aged care provider Benetas, that showed that an early intervention approach to frailty could help seniors live independently for longer.

Aged Care Minister Ken Wyatt AM said the Frailty in Community Dwelling Older People – Using Frailty Screening as the Canary in the Coal Mine study outlines a life-changing opportunity.

“Frailty detection is a game-changer in helping senior Australians enjoy a healthier and more active future,” said Minister Wyatt.

“By taking the simple FRAIL five-point online test and following up with your GP as necessary, people have the opportunity to detect frailty before it hits, allowing them to take action to live better lives, remain in their own homes for longer and avoid potential hospitalisation.

“People classed as frail are more at risk from fall injuries, deteriorating health and premature death.”

The study took 3,000 home-dwelling seniors aged 65 and over through the FRAIL Questionnaire Screening Tool test, targeting Fatigue, Resistance, Ambulation, Illnesses and Loss of weight (FRAIL).

The study found:

  • The frailty prevalence rate was 6 per cent
  • 38 per cent fell into the pre-frail category
  • Slightly more than half (56 per cent) were categorised as robust
  • Women were found to have a much higher incidence of frailty than men
  • 5 per cent of men were frail, compared with 8 per cent of women
  • 34 per cent of men were pre-frail compared with 41 per cent of women
  • Almost half of the women surveyed were either frail or pre-frail, compared with less than 40 per cent of men.

 

“The results show frailty is not present in all seniors surveyed, suggesting it is not an inevitable result of ageing and may be prevented or treated,” said Minister Wyatt.

“Importantly, the study recommends that with the right support at the right time, frailty can be halted or even reversed by consulting with health professionals for safe, simple, inexpensive, practical interventions.”

These include:

  • Modifying diet to include more proteins
  • Taking Vitamin D supplements
  • Increasing activity, including light resistance exercises and walking
  • Evaluating prescription medication intake, in consultation with your GP

 

The FRAIL test is available through the Positive Ageing Resource Centre website. At the conclusion of the brief questionnaire, you will receive a personal summary that you can discuss with your health professional.

You may also like

Connect With Me
Belinda Peters
Belinda brings more than 17 years experience in journalism to her role as Seasons Digital Content Writer. As our blog editor, Belinda will take the confusion out of aged care with entertaining and informative stories from across the aged care industry and our Seasons communities.