background: one of the objectives of the geriatric home care teams is that of the follow-up of elderly patients having a high risk of hospital readmission. although they have been operating in our country for years, no data shows the impact on the use of hospital resources in accordance with this follow-up. the objective of this study is that of analyzing the effect which the monitoring, by geriatric home care unit, involves on patients having very advanced chronic cardiorespiratory disease. methods: the patients with chronic cardiorespiratory disease followed up by the unit during the january 1995-january 1999 period were included, excluding those on follow-up for less than 3 months. a comparison is drawn among the number of hospital emergency room visits, hospital admissions and days of hospitalization for the year prior to the care provided by the unit and throughout the follow-up time thereof are compared. results: eighty-one (81) patients, mean age 80.57 years (de 7.39) and a median length of care per unit of nine (9) months (5-13,5), were included in the study. the uses per patient and month of follow-up decreased by 0.07 emergency room visits (0.02-0.11) (p=0.04), 0.10 hospital admissions (0.07-0.14) (p < 0.001) and 2.01 days of hospitalization (1.87-2.15) (p < 0.001). conclusions: a specialized geriatric home care unit reduces the use of hospital resources on elderly people diagnosed as severe chronic cardiorespiratory disease.