Low dependency: This category refers to people who need some support in the community and the more independent Residents in residential accommodation who require little nursing care. They are usually independently mobile but may use a walking stick and have difficulty managing stairs.
Medium Dependency: Person whose independence is impaired to the extent that he/she requires Residential care because the appropriate support and nursing care required by the person cannot be provided by the community. Mobility is impaired to the extent that the person requires supervision or a walking aid.
High Dependency: Independence is impaired to the extent that the person requires Residential care but is not bed bound. The person may have a combination of physical and mental disabilities, may be confused at times and be incontinent. He/she may require a walking aid and physical assistance to walk.
Maximum Dependency: Person whose independence is impaired to the extent that he/she requires nursing care. The person is likely to be bed bound, requires assistance with all aspects of physical care and may be ambulant but confused, disturbed and incontinent.
Source: Annual Survey of Long Stay Units (Department of Health and Children, 2006)