Collaborative Development of an Older Adult Experience Survey for Specialized Geriatric Services


  • Ronaye Gilsenan Regional Geriatric Program of Eastern Ontario
  • Rhonda Schwartz Seniors Care Network
  • Iris A. Gutmanis Western University
  • Adam M.B. Day North East Specialized Geriatric Centre
  • David P. Ryan Regional Geriatric Program of Toronto
  • Rosemary R.A. Brander Regional Geriatric Program of Toronto, University of Toronto
  • Kelly Milne Regional Geriatric Program of Eastern Ontario
  • Frank Molnar University of Ottawa



specialized geriatric services, frail older adults, survey, patient experience, appointment-based



While generic, site, and disease-specific patient experience surveys exist, such surveys have limited relevance to frail, medically complex older adults attending appointment-based specialized geriatric services (SGS). The study objective was to develop and evaluate a patient experience survey specific to this population.


Using established survey research methods, this study was conducted collaboratively with older adults (patients and family members/friends) at three Ontario sites offering SGS. The study was done in three phases: Phase One—literature review, evi­dence alignment, and operationalization of core survey items; Phase Two—cognitive interviews and refinement; and Phase Three—pilot testing, survey item analysis, and refinement.


Based on an evidence-informed framework, the “Older Adult Experience Survey” includes 12 core items, two global rat­ing items, two open-ended questions, and two demographic questions. The summed 12 core items demonstrated accept­able internal consistency (Cronbach’s alpha: 0.83), and the correlation between the summed score and a global question was 0.59, providing evidence of construct validity. The survey also demonstrated face and content validity.


This open access, collaboratively developed, psychometrically sound patient experience survey can be used to assess, then improve, the clinical experience and quality of care of older adults attending appointment-based SGS clinics/programs.


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How to Cite

Gilsenan R, Schwartz R, Gutmanis IA, Day AM, Ryan DP, Brander RR, Milne K, Molnar F. Collaborative Development of an Older Adult Experience Survey for Specialized Geriatric Services. Can Geriatr J [Internet]. 2021 May 11 [cited 2023 Jun. 6];24(2):96-110. Available from:



Original Research