Supporting Caregivers of Patients with Dementia Wednesday, March 18, 2015

As the U.S. population continues to age, the number of seniors suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease and other forms of dementia will increase. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 5 million Americans were living with Alzheimer’s disease in 2013, and that number is projected to nearly triple to 13.8 million by 2050. Family members who provide care for those suffering from dementia face enormous challenges, especially as symptoms worsen over time.

The featured Innovations describe three programs designed to help caregivers of those suffering from dementia. The programs include one in which trained consultants provide emotional support, education, and referrals to caregivers; a team-based collaborative care model that offers ongoing support for primary care providers; and an overnight program that allows caregivers to remain at home while the individuals they care for are transported to a facility where they spend the night in a safe and stimulating environment.

The featured QualityTools include a toolkit to design initiatives tailored to the unique needs of dementia patients and their caregivers; a Web site to manage problem behaviors and psychosis in people with dementia using evidence-based approaches; a tool that summarizes research on recognizing, diagnosing, and treating people with Alzheimer’s disease and their families; and a guide for persons with memory problems and their caregivers.

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