Improving dementia diagnosis and management in primary care: a cohort study of the impact of a training and support program on physician competency, practice patterns, and community linkages Public Deposited

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Creator
  • Zimmerman, Sheryl
    • Affiliation: School of Social Work, Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research
    • Other Affiliation: Program on Aging, Disability, and Long-Term Care
  • Kaufer, Daniel
    • Affiliation: School of Medicine, Department of Neurology
  • Lathren, Christine R
    • Affiliation: Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research
    • Other Affiliation: Program on Aging, Disability, and Long-Term Care
  • Sloane, Philip
    • Affiliation: School of Medicine, Department of Family Medicine, Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research
    • Other Affiliation: Program on Aging, Disability, and Long-Term Care
  • Hoyle, Joseph D
    • Affiliation: Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research
    • Other Affiliation: Program on Aging, Disability, and Long-Term Care
Abstract
  • Abstract Background Primary care physicians routinely provide dementia care, but may lack the clinical skills and awareness of available resources to provide optimal care. We conducted a community-based pilot dementia training intervention designed to both improve clinical competency and increase utilization of local dementia care services. Methods Physicians (N = 29) and affiliated staff (N = 24) participated in a one-day training program on dementia screening, diagnosis and management that included direct engagement with local support service providers. Questionnaires about their dementia care competency and referral patterns were completed before and 6 months after the training intervention. Results Physicians reported significantly higher overall confidence in their dementia care competency 6 months post-training compared to pre-training. The largest reported improvements were in their ability to educate patients and caregivers about dementia and making appropriate referrals to community care services. Participants also reported markedly increased use of cognitive screening tools in providing care. Community service providers recorded approximately 160 physician-initiated referrals over a 2 year-period post-training, compared to few beforehand. Conclusions Combining a targeted physician practice-based educational intervention with community service engagement improves dementia care competency in clinicians and promotes linkages between clinical and community dementia care providers.
Date of publication
Identifier
  • 24325194
  • doi:10.1186/1471-2318-13-134
Resource type
  • Article
Rights statement
  • In Copyright
Rights holder
  • Christine R Lathren et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.
License
Journal title
  • BMC Geriatrics
Journal volume
  • 13
Journal issue
  • 1
Page start
  • 134
Language
  • English
Is the article or chapter peer-reviewed?
  • Yes
ISSN
  • 1471-2318
Bibliographic citation
  • BMC Geriatrics. 2013 Dec 10;13(1):134
Access
  • Open Access
Publisher
  • BioMed Central Ltd
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