1. The older patient has unique needs and vulnerabilities that pose a challenge to nursing. 2. Excess nosocomial infections, incontinence, confusion, activity limitations, skin breakdown, and increased posthospitalization mortality are potential negative outcomes of older adult hospitalization. 3. There is some evidence of age bias in clinical decisions made regarding the older patient. 4. Additional preparation in gerontological nursing, increased sensitization to the needs of older patients, more specialized units, and greater emphasis on basic needs in the acute care setting are necessary to enhance quality nursing care for the frail older patient.