Frailty among hospitalized seniors

December 8, 2022 — As Canada’s population ages, it is expected that an increasing number of people will become frail. Individuals living with frailty have an increased risk of hospitalization, longer hospital stays, hospital readmission, emergency department visits and in-hospital death. 

The CIHI Hospital Frailty Risk Measure (CIHI HFRM) is a contextual measure developed to support planning and resourcing for seniors (age 65 and older) in hospitals across Canada. It can be used to ensure appropriate and targeted care for seniors with complex medical needs. 

Key users include health system planners and decision-makers, care delivery managers and health researchers. The measure can be used to 

  • Inform models of care for programming, staffing and discharge planning 
  • Advance quality improvement efforts and support health research 
  • Improve outcomes for hospitalized seniors at risk of frailty in acute care

Using routinely collected administrative data, the CIHI HFRM follows the accumulation of deficits (or frailty conditions) approach to determine risk of frailty. It is not a clinical diagnostic tool for use with individual patients, nor is it a health indicator to be used for comparisons across jurisdictions.

Featured material

Data tables

Aggregated results for the CIHI HFRM by hospital, health region/local health integration network, province/territory and all jurisdictions for 2016–2017 to 2020–2021

Download data tables(XLSX)


A profile of seniors at risk of frailty in Canada, including top deficits (or frailty conditions), health outcomes and more

View infographic 


Answers to frequently asked questions about the CIHI HFRM, including its main uses, and the strengths and limitations of the data available

Read frequently asked questions 

Methodology and metadata

Additional information on the data sources, definitions and methodology for the CIHI HFRM

Visit CIHI HFRM Indicator page 

Our collaborators

The CIHI HFRM was developed and validated through engagement with national and international clinical experts, and through stakeholders’ feedback.

View acknowledgements 


How to cite:

Canadian Institute for Health Information. Frailty among hospitalized seniors [Product release]. Accessed January 29, 2023.

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