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The Hospital Admission Risk Profile: The HARP helps to determine a patient's risk of functional decline.

Graf, Carla L. MS, RN, CNS-BC

AJN The American Journal of Nursing: August 2008 - Volume 108 - Issue 8 - p 62–71
doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000327832.59406.26
FEATURE: How To try this

Older adults are at risk for losing functional ability during and after a hospitalization. It's often difficult to determine which patients are at highest risk and which might benefit from targeted interventions. The Hospital Admission Risk Profile, a simple screening tool, can be used to classify hospitalized older adults as being at low, intermediate, or high risk for losing the ability to perform activities of daily living, based on assessments of age, cognitive function, and the ability to perform independent activities of daily living. It's one of many tools profiled in Try This: Best Practices in Nursing Care to Older Adults, a series provided by the Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing at New York University's College of Nursing. For a free online video demonstrating the use of this tool, go to

A simple way to classify an older adult's risk of functional decline.

Carla L. Graf is a geriatric clinical nurse specialist at the University of California, San Francisco, Medical Center. The author of this article has disclosed no significant ties, financial or otherwise, to any company that might have an interest in the publication of this educational activity. Contact author:

How to Try This is a three-year project funded by a grant from the John A. Hartford Foundation to the Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing at New York University's College of Nursing in collaboration with AJN. This initiative promotes the Hartford Institute's geriatric assessment tools, Try This: Best Practices in Nursing Care to Older Adults: The series will include articles and corresponding videos, all of which will be available for free online at Nancy A. Stotts, EdD, RN, FAAN (, and Sherry A. Greenberg, MSN, APRN, BC, GNP (, are coeditors of the print series. The articles and videos are to be used for educational purposes only. The Hospital Admission Risk Profile, which originally appeared in Sager MA, et al. Hospital Admission Risk Profile (HARP): identifying older patients at risk for functional decline following acute medical illness and hospitalization. J Am Geriatr Soc 1996;44(3):251–7, appendix p. 1–2, is reprinted with the permission of Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Routine use of a Try This tool may require formal review and approval by your employer.

© 2008 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.