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2008 Grants - Bass
Partners in Dementia Care
David M. Bass, Ph.D.
Benjamin Rose Institute
2008 Investigator-Initiated Research Grant
There are more than 200,000 veterans with dementia in the United States. Coordinating their care between the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the Alzheimer's Association could help both the veterans and their caregivers.
David M. Bass, Ph.D., and colleagues are conducting a five-year research trial of a program called Care Coordination Intervention. They're testing the program at two sites in coordination with the Massachusetts chapter and the Houston and Southeast chapters of the Alzheimer's Association, and are using the Oklahoma and Arkansas chapters and the Rhode Island chapter as control groups, where veterans will be offered "usual care." Just over 1,000 veterans will be involved in the study along with their primary caregivers.
The researchers will gauge the success of the program by conducting phone interviews with the veterans and their caregivers, examining administrative records from both the VA and the Alzheimer's Association chapters and reviewing the log of all activities with the veterans as part of the Care Coordination Intervention. They will look for outcomes such as reduced use of health care services, reduced health care costs and improved psychosocial outcomes.
If the program is effective, it has the potential to improve the care delivered to people with dementia in VA medical centers throughout the country. This program could also enable Alzheimer's Association chapters to reach a large, underserved group of people with dementia and their families.