Measurement Characteristics and Clinical Utility of the Kohlman Evaluation of Living Skills Among Older Adults

Published:November 04, 2019DOI:
      There is a strong desire for older adults to age in place and continue living at home.1 However, many factors affect the ability for older adults to live successfully in the community. Assessment of performance and independence in activities of daily living is essential in understanding the amount and type of assistance needed for successful community living in this population. The Kohlman Evaluation of Living Skills (KELS) is an observation- and interview-based assessment used in inpatient or outpatient facilities to evaluate function in the areas of self-care, safety and health, money management, community mobility and telephone, and employment and leisure participation for older adults.2 This 17-item measure rates individuals’ performances in these areas as Independent, Needs Assistance, or Not Applicable, ultimately resulting in a final score that indicates the level of assistance an individual would need to live independently in the community.2 The KELS is psychometrically sound for the older adult population, exhibiting adequate to excellent validity measures.1,3 The KELS has been translated into several languages and shown to be valid across different cultural groups and settings.2 The scoring manual and scoring forms are available for purchase from the American Occupational Therapy Association online store for $99 for American Occupational Therapy Association members and $140 for nonmembers.
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