Description of Palliative Care Needs Among the Elderly in Indonesia


Indonesia is the third largest country in the world, with the number of elderly reaching 80 million. The increase in this demographic will impact the level of care from health services available for the elderly, further increasing their problems with the disruption of daily activities, decreased physical ability, psychological, autonomy, spiritual, social, and financial functions. These needs are adopted from the Problems and Needs of Palliative Care (PNPC) assessment tools. This study aimed to describe the elderly’s need for palliative care. This study used descriptive quantitative analysis with a cross-sectional approach. The number of samples was 13 elderly based on G * Power, with an estimated dropout of 10%. The instrument used PNPC, which has been adapted into Bahasa with 35 questions in total. Statistical analysis showed the elderly’s needs maximum value was at physical as well as psychological aspects. Physical complaints in the elderly are obtained that vary depending on the condition of the elderly and are associated with other health issues, related to the level of fitness followed by the elderly’s independence. This study recommends health professionals, especially nurses, to conduct an initial assessment to evaluate the physical needs of the patient by reducing and resolving any health-related symptoms and fulfilling their psychological needs.


Keywords: Elderly, Physic, Problems and Needs of Palliative Care, Psychologic

[1] Kemenkes R. I. (2017). Analysis of the Elderly in Indonesia. Jakarta: Center for Data and Information, Ministry of Health, Republic of Indonesia, pp. 1–2.

[2] Badan Pusat Statistik. (2019). Catalog: 4104001 In Elderly Population Statistics in Indonesia 2019.

[3] Stanhope, M. and Lancaster, J. (2016). Public Health Nursing Population Centered Health Care in the Community (9th ed.). Missouri: Elsevier.

[4] Talarska, D., et al. (2018). Determinants of Quality of Life and the Need for Support for the Elderly with Good Physical and Mental Functioning. Medical Science Monitor, vol. 19, issue 24, pp. 1604–1613.

[5] Osse, B. H. P., et al. (2004). Towards a New Clinical Tool for Needs Assessment in the Palliative Care of Cancer Patients: The PNPC Instrument. Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, vol. 8, issue 4, pp. 329-341, http://doi:10.1016/j.jpainsymman.2004.01.010.

[6] Gobbens, R. J. (2018). Associations of ADL and IADL disability with Physical and Mental Dimensions of Quality of Life in People Aged 75 Years and Older. PeerJ, vol. 6

[7] Gobbens, R. J. J. and Remmen, R. (2019). The Effects of Sociodemographic Factors on Quality of Life among People Aged 50 Years or Older are not Unequivocal: Comparing SF-12, WHOQOL-BREF, and WHOQOL-OLD. Clinical Interventions in Aging, issue 14, pp. 231–239, S189560.

[8] Henskens, M., et al. (2018). The Effects of Movement Stimulation on Activities of Daily Living Performance and Quality of Life in Nursing Home Residents with Dementia: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Clinical Interventions in Aging, issue 13, pp. 805–817.

[9] Matud, P. M. and García, C. M. (2019). Psychological Distress and Social Functioning in Elderly Spanish People: A Gender Analysis. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, vol. 16, issue 3, pp. 341-354,

[10] Knapik, A., et al. (2019). The Relationship between Physical Fitness and Health Self-Assessments in Elderly. Medicine, vol. 98, issue 25, p. e15984.

[11] Kong, F., et al. (2019). Association Between Socioeconomic Status, Physical Health and Need for LongTerm Care among the Chinese Elderly. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, vol. 16, issue 12, pp. 1–19.

[12] Almeida, D. M., et al. (2011). The Speedometer of Life: Stress, Health and Aging. In K. W. Schaie and S. L. Willis (Eds.), Handbook of the Psychology of Aging (7th ed.). San Diego: Academic Press, pp. 191–206.

[13] Tornøe, K., et al. (2015). A Mobile Hospice Nurse Teaching Team’s Experience: Training Care Workers in Spiritual and Existential Care for the Dying-A Qualitative Study. Knowledge, Education and Training. BMC Palliative Care, issue 14, pp. 43,

[14] Gijsberts, M., et al. (2019). Spiritual Care in Palliative Care: A Systematic Review of the Recent European Literature. Medical Sciences, vol. 7, issue 2, pp. 25,