May 15, 2018

Grants & Awards


New Article by Dr. Carole Estabrooks
Engagement-capable environments – No less challenging than other large system changes
Non UofA Access

C. A. Estabrooks.
Healthc Pap 2017 Oct;17(2):40-45
Kuluski et al.’s (2017) argument for including a more advanced form of health system performance management centred on “the experience of care,” raises the major challenge of creating and sustaining engagement-capable environments. Here I briefly address frameworks that may be useful in meeting this challenge – Complex Adaptive Systems, Innovation Diffusion, Whole System Change. I also offer a personal perspective drawn from a successful citizen engagement experience, concluding with a perspective on the numerous challenges we have or are in the process of overcoming compared to the challenges of engagement-capable environments.


Back to top of page

Grants & Awards

CFHI Strengthening our Long Term Care Together: Embedding Palliative Approaches to Care (EPAC) Spread Collaborative

Are you a long-term care home looking to improve end-of-life care for residents and their families, while strengthening the quality improvement culture within your organization? Apply to our EPAC collaborative focused on advancing the shared priority of providing end-of-life care for residents and their families in their homes.


Back to top of page


Health Care Administration and Organization
Health Care Innovation and Quality Assurance
Organizational Culture and Change
Research Practice and Methodology


Adaptation of evidence-based guideline recommendations to address urinary incontinence in nursing home residents according to the ADAPTE-process
Non UofA Access

M. Hoedl, D. Schoberer, R. J. Halfens and C. Lohrmann.
J Clin Nurs 2018 Apr 27
To adapt international guideline recommendations for the conservative management of urinary incontinence (UI), defined as any involuntary loss of urine, in Austrian nursing home residents following the ADAPTE-process. BACKGROUND: Many international guidelines for managing urinary incontinence (UI) are available. Nevertheless, the international recommendations have not yet been adapted to address the Austrian nursing home context. This crucial adaptation process will enhance the acceptance and applicability of the recommendations as well as encourage adherence among Austrian nurses and nursing home residents. DESIGN: This study is a methodological study based on the ADAPTE-process, including a systematic search, quality appraisal of the guidelines using the Appraisal of Clinical Guidelines for REsearch & Evaluation II (AGREE II) instrument as well as an external review by means of a Delphi technique. The guidelines had to be topic-relevant, published within the last three years and achieve a rigor of development score of 80% using the AGREE II instrument. METHODS: We searched international guideline databases to identify adequate guidelines. Two raters assessed the quality of each guideline, ascertaining that it fulfilled the inclusion criteria by using the AGREE II instrument. The identified recommendations were translated into German and externally reviewed for their applicability in the Austrian context. RESULTS: 1612 hits were identified in 10 databases. After applying inclusion and exclusion criteria, 5 international clinical guidelines were assessed for quality using the AGREE II instrument. One clinical guideline fulfilled the inclusion criteria. This clinical guideline contains 116 recommendations, of which 29 were applicable in the Austrian nursing home setting. CONCLUSION: Only one suitable guideline was identified, possibly due to the stringent nature of the inclusion criteria. However, following low-quality guidelines may result in the use of recommendations that are not based on evidence and, therefore, may lead to suboptimal nursing care and outcomes.

Moments of homecoming among people with advanced dementia disease in a residential care facility.
Non UofA Access

A. Norberg, B. M. Ternestedt and B. Lundman.
Dementia (London) 2017 Jul;16(5):629-641
This study concerns moments of homecoming among people with advanced dementia disease living in a residential care facility. Our main finding from participant observations with nine residents was that the residents showed moments of homecoming, i.e. they alternated between verbal and/or nonverbal expressions of feeling at home and of not feeling at home. If care providers understand that they can help people with advanced dementia disease experience moments of homecoming, they can focus on aspects of care that can promote these experiences.

What can we learn from interventions that aim to increase policy-makers’ capacity to use research? A realist scoping review
Non UofA Access

A. Haynes, S. J. Rowbotham, S. Redman, S. Brennan, A. Williamson and G. Moore.
Health Res Policy Syst 2018 Apr 10;16(1):31-018-0277-1
Health policy-making can benefit from more effective use of research. In many policy settings there is scope to increase capacity for using research individually and organisationally, but little is known about what strategies work best in which circumstances. This review addresses the question: What causal mechanisms can best explain the observed outcomes of interventions that aim to increase policy-makers’ capacity to use research in their work? METHODS: Articles were identified from three available reviews and two databases (PAIS and WoS; 1999-2016). Using a realist approach, articles were reviewed for information about contexts, outcomes (including process effects) and possible causal mechanisms. Strategy + Context + Mechanism = Outcomes (SCMO) configurations were developed, drawing on theory and findings from other studies to develop tentative hypotheses that might be applicable across a range of intervention sites. RESULTS: We found 22 studies that spanned 18 countries. There were two dominant design strategies (needs-based tailoring and multi-component design) and 18 intervention strategies targeting four domains of capacity, namely access to research, skills improvement, systems improvement and interaction. Many potential mechanisms were identified as well as some enduring contextual characteristics that all interventions should consider. The evidence was variable, but the SCMO analysis suggested that tailored interactive workshops supported by goal-focused mentoring, and genuine collaboration, seem particularly promising. Systems supports and platforms for cross-sector collaboration are likely to play crucial roles. Gaps in the literature are discussed. CONCLUSION: This exploratory review tentatively posits causal mechanisms that might explain how intervention strategies work in different contexts to build capacity for using research in policy-making.

Evaluation of the “Foundations in Knowledge Translation” training initiative: preparing end users to practice KT
Non UofA Access

J. S. Park, J. E. Moore, R. Sayal, et al.
Implement Sci 2018 Apr 25;13(1):63-018-0755-4
Current knowledge translation (KT) training initiatives are primarily focused on preparing researchers to conduct KT research rather than on teaching KT practice to end users. Furthermore, training initiatives that focus on KT practice have not been rigorously evaluated and have focused on assessing short-term outcomes and participant satisfaction only. Thus, there is a need for longitudinal training evaluations that assess the sustainability of training outcomes and contextual factors that may influence outcomes. METHODS: We evaluated the KT training initiative “Foundations in KT” using a mixed-methods longitudinal design. “Foundations in KT” provided training in KT practice and included three tailored in-person workshops, coaching, and an online platform for training materials and knowledge exchange. Two cohorts were included in the study (62 participants, including 46 “Foundations in KT” participants from 16 project teams and 16 decision-maker partners). Participants completed self-report questionnaires, focus groups, and interviews at baseline and at 6, 12, 18, and 24 months after the first workshop. RESULTS: Participant-level outcomes include survey results which indicated that participants’ self-efficacy in evidence-based practice (F(1,8.9) = 23.7, p = 0.001, n = 45), KT activities (F(1,23.9) = 43.2, p < 0.001, n = 45), and using evidence to inform practice increased over time (F(1,11.0) = 6.0, p = 0.03, n = 45). Interviews and focus groups illustrated that participants’ understanding of and confidence in using KT increased from baseline to 24 months after the workshop. Interviews and focus groups suggested that the training initiative helped participants achieve their KT project objectives, plan their projects, and solve problems over time. Contextual factors include teams with high self-reported organizational capacity and commitment to implement at the start of their project had buy-in from upper management that resulted in secured funding and resources for their project. Training initiative outcomes include participants who applied the KT knowledge and skills they learned to other projects by sharing their knowledge informally with coworkers. Sustained spread of KT practice was observed with five teams at 24 months. CONCLUSIONS: We completed a longitudinal evaluation of a KT training initiative. Positive participant outcomes were sustained until 24 months after the initial workshop. Given the emphasis on implementing evidence and the need to train implementers, these findings are promising for future KT training.

Wicked tendencies in policy problems: rethinking the distinction between social and technical problems
Non UofA Access

Joshua Newman and Brian W. Head.
Policy and Society 2017 07/03;36(3):414-429
Complex or intractable policy problems, often called ?wicked? problems, have been a feature of public policy research since the early 1970s. Observers have generally assumed that these wicked problems constitute a distinct category of policy problems, based on the notion that some problems ? those characterised as substantially technical or scientific in nature ? lend themselves to traditional linear problem-solving methods, whereas other problems that are social in nature tend to be wicked. By examining three cases where scientific knowledge is central to the debate ? climate change, genetically modified foods and hydraulic fracturing ? we argue that all policy problems can exhibit wicked tendencies, regardless of the amount of scientific information available to decision-makers. Therefore, the reliance on increased information in resolving wicked problems is unlikely to be sufficient or effective.

When complexity science meets implementation science: a theoretical and empirical analysis of systems change
Non UofA Access

J. Braithwaite, K. Churruca, J. C. Long, L. A. Ellis and J. Herkes.
BMC Med 2018 Apr 30;16(1):63-018-1057-z
Implementation science has a core aim – to get evidence into practice. Early in the evidence-based medicine movement, this task was construed in linear terms, wherein the knowledge pipeline moved from evidence created in the laboratory through to clinical trials and, finally, via new tests, drugs, equipment, or procedures, into clinical practice. We now know that this straight-line thinking was naive at best, and little more than an idealization, with multiple fractures appearing in the pipeline. DISCUSSION: The knowledge pipeline derives from a mechanistic and linear approach to science, which, while delivering huge advances in medicine over the last two centuries, is limited in its application to complex social systems such as healthcare. Instead, complexity science, a theoretical approach to understanding interconnections among agents and how they give rise to emergent, dynamic, systems-level behaviors, represents an increasingly useful conceptual framework for change. Herein, we discuss what implementation science can learn from complexity science, and tease out some of the properties of healthcare systems that enable or constrain the goals we have for better, more effective, more evidence-based care. Two Australian examples, one largely top-down, predicated on applying new standards across the country, and the other largely bottom-up, adopting medical emergency teams in over 200 hospitals, provide empirical support for a complexity-informed approach to implementation. The key lessons are that change can be stimulated in many ways, but a triggering mechanism is needed, such as legislation or widespread stakeholder agreement; that feedback loops are crucial to continue change momentum; that extended sweeps of time are involved, typically much longer than believed at the outset; and that taking a systems-informed, complexity approach, having regard for existing networks and socio-technical characteristics, is beneficial. CONCLUSION: Construing healthcare as a complex adaptive system implies that getting evidence into routine practice through a step-by-step model is not feasible. Complexity science forces us to consider the dynamic properties of systems and the varying characteristics that are deeply enmeshed in social practices, whilst indicating that multiple forces, variables, and influences must be factored into any change process, and that unpredictability and uncertainty are normal properties of multi-part, intricate systems.

Organizational contextual features that influence the implementation of evidence-based practices across healthcare settings: a systematic integrative review.
Non UofA Access

S. A. Li, L. Jeffs, M. Barwick and B. Stevens.
Syst Rev 2018 May 5;7(1):72-018-0734-5
Organizational contextual features have been recognized as important determinants for implementing evidence-based practices across healthcare settings for over a decade. However, implementation scientists have not reached consensus on which features are most important for implementing evidence-based practices. The aims of this review were to identify the most commonly reported organizational contextual features that influence the implementation of evidence-based practices across healthcare settings, and to describe how these features affect implementation. METHODS: An integrative review was undertaken following literature searches in CINAHL, MEDLINE, PsycINFO, EMBASE, Web of Science, and Cochrane databases from January 2005 to June 2017. English language, peer-reviewed empirical studies exploring organizational context in at least one implementation initiative within a healthcare setting were included. Quality appraisal of the included studies was performed using the Mixed Methods Appraisal Tool. Inductive content analysis informed data extraction and reduction. RESULTS: The search generated 5152 citations. After removing duplicates and applying eligibility criteria, 36 journal articles were included. The majority (n = 20) of the study designs were qualitative, 11 were quantitative, and 5 used a mixed methods approach. Six main organizational contextual features (organizational culture; leadership; networks and communication; resources; evaluation, monitoring and feedback; and champions) were most commonly reported to influence implementation outcomes in the selected studies across a wide range of healthcare settings. CONCLUSIONS: We identified six organizational contextual features that appear to be interrelated and work synergistically to influence the implementation of evidence-based practices within an organization. Organizational contextual features did not influence implementation efforts independently from other features. Rather, features were interrelated and often influenced each other in complex, dynamic ways to effect change. These features corresponded to the constructs in the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research (CFIR), which supports the use of CFIR as a guiding framework for studies that explore the relationship between organizational context and implementation. Organizational culture was most commonly reported to affect implementation. Leadership exerted influence on the five other features, indicating it may be a moderator or mediator that enhances or impedes the implementation of evidence-based practices. Future research should focus on how organizational features interact to influence implementation effectiveness.


Back to top of page      Back to top of publications

Health Care Administration and Organization

Impact of Intervention to Improve Nursing Home Resident-Staff Interactions and Engagement
Non UofA Access

C. W. Hartmann, W. L. Mills, C. B. Pimentel, et al.
Gerontologist 2018 Apr 30
For nursing home residents, positive interactions with staff and engagement in daily life contribute meaningfully to quality of life. We sought to improve these aspects of person-centered care in an opportunistic snowball sample of six Veterans Health Administration nursing homes (e.g., Community Living Centers-CLCs) using an intervention that targeted staff behavior change, focusing on improving interactions between residents and staff and thereby ultimately aiming to improve resident engagement. Research Design and Methods: We grounded this mixed-methods study in the Capability, Opportunity, Motivation, Behavior (COM-B) model of behavior change. We implemented the intervention by (a) using a set of evidence-based practices for implementing quality improvement and (b) combining primarily CLC-based staff facilitation with some researcher-led facilitation. Validated resident and staff surveys and structured observations collected pre and post intervention, as well as semi-structured staff interviews conducted post intervention, helped assess intervention success. Results: Sixty-two CLC residents and 308 staff members responded to the surveys. Researchers conducted 1,490 discrete observations. Intervention implementation was associated with increased staff communication with residents during the provision of direct care and decreased negative staff interactions with residents. In the 66 interviews, staff consistently credited the intervention with helping them (a) develop awareness of the importance of identifying opportunities for engagement and (b) act to improve the quality of interactions between residents and staff. Discussion and Implications: The intervention proved feasible and influenced staff to make simple enhancements to their behaviors that improved resident-staff interactions and staff-assessed resident engagement.

Resisting decay: On disposal, valuation, and care in a dementia nursing home in Denmark
Non UofA Access

I. M. Gjodsbol, L. Koch and M. N. Svendsen.
Soc Sci Med 2017 Jul;184:116-123
This paper approaches institutionalized dementia care as a site of societal disposal, valuation, and care for human life. Drawing upon six weeks of ethnographic fieldwork and ten qualitative interviews carried out in a Danish dementia nursing home in 2014, we analyze how nursing home staff, through everyday care, uphold the value of life for residents in severe mental and physical decline. We argue that life’s worth is established when residents gain qualities of personhood and agency through substitution processes carried out by staff. Yet the persistent absence of conventional personhood and autonomous agency in residents (i.e. capacities for memory, consciousness, language, and mobility) evokes experiences of ambiguity in staff and relatives of residents. We close the article with a discussion of this ambiguity and the significance of the nursing home as care institution in the welfare state. Dementia care, we propose, is not only about preserving the lives of people with dementia. At stake in the daily care practices around severely disabled residents in the nursing home is the very continuance of the main principles of the welfare society.

Implementing a psycho-educational intervention for care assistants working with people with dementia in aged-care facilities: facilitators and barriers.
Non UofA Access

A. Barbosa, M. Nolan, L. Sousa and D. Figueiredo.
Scand J Caring Sci 2017 Jun;31(2):222-231
Many intervention studies lack an investigation and description of the factors that are relevant to its success or failure, despite its relevance to inform future interventions. This study aimed to explore the facilitators and barriers to the implementation of a psycho-educational intervention for care assistants caring for people with dementia in aged-care facilities. A process evaluation was carried out alongside a pretest/post-test controlled study conducted in aged-care facilities. Seven focus-group interviews involving 21 care assistants (female; mean age 43.37 +/- 10.0) and individual semi-structured interviews with two managers (female; mean age 45.5 +/- 10.26) were conducted 2 weeks and 6 months after the intervention, in two aged-care facilities. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and submitted to content analysis by two independent researchers. Results were organised into implementer, participant and organisation level hindered and facilitator factors. Findings enable the interpretation of the experimental results and underscore the importance of collecting the perception of different grades of staff to obtain information relevant to plan effective interventions.

Accurate identification of hospital admissions from care homes; development and validation of an automated algorithm
Non UofA Access

G. Housley, S. Lewis, A. Usman, A. L. Gordon and D. E. Shaw.
Age Ageing 2018 May 1;47(3):387-391
Background: measuring the complex needs of care home residents is crucial for resource allocation. Hospital patient administration systems (PAS) may not accurately identify admissions from care homes. Objective: to develop and validate an accurate, practical method of identifying care home resident hospital admission using routinely collected PAS data. Method: admissions data between 2011 and 2012 (n = 103,105) to an acute Trust were modelled to develop an automated tool which compared the hospital PAS address details with the Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) database, producing a likelihood of care home residency. This tool and the Nuffield method (CQC postcode match only) were validated against a manual check of a random sample of admissions (n = 2,000). A dataset from a separate Trust was analysed to assess generalisability. Results: the hospital PAS was inaccurate; none of the admissions from a care home identified on manual check had a care home source of admission recorded on the PAS. Both methods performed well; the automated tool had a higher positive predictive value than the Nuffield method (100% 95% confidence interval (CI) 98.23-100% versus 87.10% 95%CI 82.28-91.00%), meaning those coded as care home residents were more likely to actually be from a care home. Our automated tool had a high level of agreement 99.2% with the second Trust’s data (Kappa 0.86 P < 0.001). Conclusions: care home status is not routinely or accurately captured. Automated matching offers an accurate, repeatable, scalable method to identify care home residency and could be used as a tool to benchmark how care home residents use acute hospital resources across the National Health Service.

Longitudinal variation in pressure injury incidence among long-term aged care facilities.
Non UofA Access

M. Jorgensen, J. Siette, A. Georgiou and J. I. Westbrook.
Int J Qual Health Care 2018 May 4
To examine variation in pressure injury (PI) incidence among long-term aged care facilities and identify resident- and facility-level factors that explain this variation. Design: Longitudinal incidence study using routinely-collected electronic care management data. Setting: A large aged care service provider in New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory, Australia. Participants: About 6556 people aged 65 years and older who were permanent residents in 60 long-term care facilities between December 2014 and November 2016. Main Outcome Measure: Risk-adjusted PI incidence rates over eight study quarters. Results: Incidence density over the study period was 1.33 pressure injuries per 1000 resident days (95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.29-1.37). Funnel plots were used to identify variation among facilities. On average, 14% of facilities had risk-adjusted PI rates that were higher than expected in each quarter (above 95% funnel plot control limits). Ten percent of facilities had persistently high rates in any three or more consecutive quarters (n = 6). The variation between facilities was only partly explained by resident characteristics in multilevel regression models. Residents were more likely to have higher-pressure injury rates in facilities in regional areas compared with major city areas (adjusted incidence rate ratio = 1.25, 95% CI = 1.04-1.51), and facilities with persistently high rates were more likely to be located in areas with low socioeconomic status (P = 0.038). Conclusions: There is considerable variation among facilities in PI incidence. This study demonstrates the potential of routinely-collected care management data to monitor PI incidence and to identify facilities that may benefit from targeted intervention.

How Does Rurality Influence the Staffing of Social Service Departments in Nursing Homes?
Non UofA Access

A. R. Roberts and J. R. Bowblis.
Gerontologist 2018 May 8;58(3):540-545
Social service departments in nursing homes (NHs) are staffed by qualified social workers (QSWs) and paraprofessionals. Due to greater workforce challenges in rural areas, this article aims to describe the staffing levels and composition of these departments by rurality. Design and Methods: Certification and Survey Provider Enhanced Reports data from 2009 to 2015 are used to examine the effect of rurality on social service staffing using random-effects linear panel regressions. Results: The average NH employed 1.8 full-time equivalents (FTEs), with approximately two thirds of social services staffed by QSWs. Large NHs had more staff, but employed fewer staff hours per resident day. Staffing levels were lower and QSWs made up a smaller percentage of staff in rural areas. Implications: National trends indicate variability in staffing by NH size and degree of rurality. Very low staffing within rural NHs is a concern, as staff may have less time to respond to residents’ needs and these NHs may utilize fewer QSWs.

Nursing Administrators’ Views on Oral Health in Long-Term Care Facilities: An exploratory study.

Non UofA Access

J. Y. Urata, E. T. Couch, M. M. Walsh and D. J. Rowe.
J Dent Hyg 2018 Apr;92(2):22-30
To explore the knowledge, attitudes, and practices of supervising nurse administrators (SNAs) regarding the oral care provided to long-term care facility (LTCF) residents and the role of dental professionals in those facilities.Methods: The investigators of this study partnered with the National Association of Nursing Administrators to send this cross-sectional study consisting of a 35-item electronic survey to its members whose email addresses were in their database. Online software tabulated responses and calculated frequencies (percentages) of responses for each survey item.Results: Of the 2,359 potential participants, 171 (n=171) completed the survey for a 7% response rate. Only 25% of the respondents were familiar with the expertise of dental hygienists (DHs), however once informed, the majority were interested in having DHs perform oral health staff trainings, oral screenings, and dental referrals and initiate fluoride varnish programs. Most respondents correctly answered the oral health-related knowledge items, understood that oral health is important to general health, but reported that the LTCF residents’ oral health was only “good” or “fair.” Fewer than half, (48%) of the SNAs were “very satisfied” with the quality of oral care provided to the residents. While more than half reported that they had no dentist on staff or on-site dental equipment, 77% reported that they would consider on-site mobile oral care services. Oral health training for staff was provided primarily by registered nurses, however only 32% reported including identification of dental caries as part of the in-service training.Conclusion: This exploratory study lays the foundation for more extensive research investigating various strategies to improve the oral health of LTCF residents, including increased collaboration between DHs and SNAs.

The Impact of Dementia Special Care Units on Quality of Care: An Instrumental Variables Analysis.

Non UofA Access

N. R. Joyce, T. G. McGuire, S. J. Bartels, S. L. Mitchell and D. C. Grabowski.
Health Serv Res 2018 May 7
To compare the quality of care following admission to a nursing home (NH) with and without a dementia special care unit (SCU) for residents with dementia. DATA SOURCES/STUDY SETTING: National resident-level minimum dataset assessments (MDS) 2005-2010 merged with Medicare claims and provider-level data from the Online Survey, Certification, and Reporting database. STUDY DESIGN: We employ an instrumental variable approach to address the endogeneity of selection into an SCU facility controlling for a range of individual-level covariates. We use “differential distance” to a nursing home with and without an SCU as our instrument. DATA COLLECTION/EXTRACTION METHODS: Minimum dataset assessments performed at NH admission and every quarter thereafter. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Admission to a facility with an SCU led to a reduction in inappropriate antipsychotics (-9.7 percent), physical restraints (-9.6 percent), pressure ulcers (-3.3 percent), feeding tubes (-8.3 percent), and hospitalizations (-14.7 percent). We found no impact on the use of indwelling urinary catheters. Results held in sensitivity analyses that accounted for the share of SCU beds and the facilities’ overall quality. CONCLUSIONS: Facilities with an SCU provide better quality of care as measured by several validated quality indicators. Given the aging population, policies to promote the expansion and use of dementia SCUs may be warranted.

Staff-perceived Conflict between Resident-centered Care and Quality in the Skilled Nursing Facility: Are Both Possible?

Non UofA Access

V. Parker, R. L. Engle, M. K. Afable, et al.
Clin Gerontol 2018 Apr 23:1-10
The purpose of this study was to understand if and how Veterans Affairs (VA) nursing home (CLC) staff experience difficulty in providing care that is both resident-centered (RCC) and concordant with quality standards. METHODS: Twelve VA CLCs were selected for site visits, stratified based on rankings on a composite quality measure (calculated from various indicators) and resident-centered care (RCC) progress (based on a culture change tool). Staff were interviewed about efforts and barriers to achieving goals in RCC and quality, and the interview transcripts systematically analyzed for themes. RESULTS: We interviewed 141 participants, including senior leaders, middle managers, and front-line staff. An emergent theme was conflict between RCC and quality, although participants varied in their perceptions of its impact. Participants perceived three conflict types: 1) between resident preferences and medically indicated actions; 2) between resident preferences and the needs or safety of others; and 3) limits of staff time or authority. CONCLUSIONS: CLC staff perceive conflicts between RCC and care consistent with quality imperatives. CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: Variation in perceived RCC-quality conflicts suggests that policy clarifications and additional training may provide guidance in dealing with such dilemmas. It may be prudent to clearly communicate to what boundaries exist to RCC in the evolving CLC environment.

Psychological factors related to nurses’ intentions to initiate an antipsychotic or psychosocial intervention with nursing home residents.
Non UofA Access

B. M. Ludwin and S. Meeks.
Geriatr Nurs 2018 May 3
This study examined the validity of a psychological model for understanding nursing home providers’ treatment choices when managing challenging dementia-related behaviors. Ninety-nine nurses from 26 long-term care facilities responded to a case study with their intentions to initiate an antipsychotic or psychosocial intervention and completed self-report measures of their attitudes, descriptive norms, self-efficacy, and outcome expectancies. The multi-level modeling results demonstrated that nurses with more positive outcome expectancies for the effect of an antipsychotic on resident behavior, and those with more positive attitudes towards antipsychotics, had greater intentions to initiate an antipsychotic. Intentions to initiate a psychosocial intervention were greater when nurses perceived a lower prevalence of antipsychotics and in facilities with nurses who collectively had higher self-efficacy to implement such interventions. The findings offer partial support for the proposed model and possible intervention targets to improve psychosocial intervention use and antipsychotic prescribing.

The impact of nurse and care staff education on the functional ability and quality of life of people living with dementia in aged care: A systematic review.

Non UofA Access

M. Bauer, D. Fetherstonhaugh, E. Haesler, E. Beattie, K. D. Hill and C. J. Poulos.
Nurse Educ Today 2018 Apr 23;67:27-45
impact of nurse and care staff education on measures of functional ability and quality of life for older people with dementia living in care homes. DESIGN: Systematic review. DATA SOURCES: Search of on-line databases in English between January 2000 and January 2017. REVIEW METHODS: Three reviewers used data extraction and critical appraisal tools of the Joanna Briggs Institute to determine methodological quality of research. RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: Thirty-two studies met the initial inclusion criteria and 13 were retrieved for full appraisal. There was limited impact of nurse and care staff education on residents’ agitation, anxiety, mood and quality of life. The most consistent improvement in functional ability due to education may be in the execution of activities of daily living. More successful programs included multi-faceted components (e.g. hands on support, clinical auditing) in conjunction with didactic teaching. There is a need for more rigorous and well-designed studies to test interventions.

Back to top of page      Back to top of publications

Health Care Innovation and Quality Assurance

Managers’ experience of success criteria and barriers to implementing mobile radiography services in nursing homes in Norway: a qualitative study.
Non UofA Access

E. Kjelle, K. B. Lysdahl, H. M. Olerud and A. M. Myklebust.
BMC Health Serv Res 2018 Apr 25;18(1):301-018-3115-9
In order to meet the future challenges posed by ageing populations, new technology, telemedicine and a more personalized healthcare system are needed. Earlier research has shown mobile radiography services to be highly beneficial for nursing home residents in addition to being cost-effective. Despite the benefits, mobile radiography services are uncommon in Europe and Norway. The purpose of this study was to explore success criteria and barriers in the process of implementing mobile radiography services, from the point of view of the hospital and municipal managers. METHODS: Eleven semi-structured interviews were conducted with managers from five hospitals and six municipalities in Norway where mobile radiography services had been implemented. Core issues in the interview guide were barriers and facilitators in the different phases of implementation. The framework method for thematic analysis was used for analysing the data inductively in a research team. RESULTS: Five main categories were developed through the success criteria and barriers experienced by the participants: national health policy, regional and municipal policy and conditions, inter-organizational implementation projects, experienced outcome, and professional skills and personal characteristics. The categories were allocated into three higher-order classifications: macro, meso and micro levels. The main barriers experienced by the managers were financial, procedural and structural. In particular, the reimbursement system, lack of management across healthcare levels and the lack of compatible information systems acted as barriers. The main facilitators were external funding, enthusiastic individuals in the organizations and good collaboration between hospitals and municipalities. CONCLUSIONS: The managers experienced financial, structural and procedural barriers. The main success criteria in the process were external funding, and the support and engagement from the individuals in the organizations. This commitment was mainly facilitated by the intuitive appeal of mobile radiography. Changes in healthcare management and in the financial system might facilitate services across healthcare levels. In addition, compatible information systems across healthcare levels are needed in order to facilitate the use of new technology and mobile services.

Informing implementation of quality improvement in Australian primary care.
Non UofA Access

C. Hespe, L. Rychetnik, D. Peiris and M. Harris.
BMC Health Serv Res 2018 Apr 16;18(1):287-018-3099-
Quality Improvement (QI) initiatives in primary care are effective at improving uptake of evidence based guidelines, but are difficult to implement and sustain. In Australia meso-level health organisations such as Primary health care Organisations (PHCO) offer new opportunities to implement area-wide QI programs. This study sought to identify enablers and barriers to implementation of an existing Australian QI program and to identify strategic directions that PHCOs can use in the ongoing development of QI in this environment. METHODS: Semi-structured telephone interviews were conducted with 15 purposively selected program staff and participants from the Australian Primary Care Collaborative (APCC) QI program. Interviewees included seven people involved in design, administration and implementation of the APCC program and eight primary care providers (seven General Practitioners (GPs) and one practice nurse) who had participated in the program from 2004 to 2014. Interviewees were asked to describe their experience of the program and reflect on what enabled or impeded its implementation. Interviews were recorded, transcribed and iteratively analysed, with early analysis informing subsequent interviews. Identified themes and their implications were reviewed by a GP expert reference group. RESULTS: Implementation enablers and barriers were grouped into five thematic areas: (1) leadership, particularly the identification and utilisation of change champions; (2) organisational culture that supports quality improvement; (3) funding incentives that support a culture of quality and innovation; (4) access to and use of accurate data; and 5) design and utilisation of clinical systems that enable and support these issues. In all of these areas, the active involvement of an overarching external support organisation was considered a key ingredient to successful implementation. CONCLUSION: There are substantial opportunities for PHCOs to play a pivotal role in QI implementation in Australia and internationally. In developing QI programs and policies, such organisations ought to invest their efforts in: (1) identifying and mentoring local leaders; (2) fostering QI culture via development of local peer networks; (3) developing and advocating for alternative funding models to support and incentivise these activities; (4) investing in data and audit tool infrastructure; and (5) facilitation of systems implementation within primary care practices.

A qualitative analysis of trainer/coach experiences of changing care home practice in the Well-being and Health in Dementia randomised control trial
Non UofA Access

J. Fossey, L. Garrod, A. Guzman and I. Testad.
Dementia (London) 2018 Jan 1:1471301218772178
This study explored the experiences of a range of health and social care professionals employed in the role of trainer/coaches to support care home staff to implement a psychosocial intervention for residents living with dementia. It aimed to identify the factors which are pertinent to these roles, in the context of a cascade model of training. Method A focus group was convened involving dementia trainer/coaches and supervisors who had worked on Well-being and Health for people with Dementia randomised control trial. Twelve participants explored their preparedness for and experiences of their role as ‘Well-being and Health for people with Dementia therapists’. They reflected on their perceptions of the resources and support required. The data were transcribed verbatim and subjected to inductive thematic analysis. Results Three main themes emerged from the data. Within the theme of ‘skills in relationship building’ were two subthemes of developing trust and getting to know individual staff and each care home. In the second main theme of ‘making use of tangible resources’ two subthemes relating to using the Well-being and Health for people with Dementia manuals and the supervision of the therapists arose. The third theme, ‘being an agent for change’ contained three subthemes: effective training methods, creating opportunities for Dementia Champions to reflect and therapists’ perceived rewards of their role. Conclusion The findings provide new insights into the trainer/coach role applicable to the practices of services recruiting, training and providing ongoing professional support to practitioners in-reaching into care homes.

Wicked and less wicked problems: a typology and a contingency framework
Non UofA Access

John Alford and Brian W. Head.
Policy and Society 2017 07/03;36(3):397-413
This paper addresses shortcomings in the scholarship about wicked problems, and suggests ways of tackling them. Firstly, accounts of these problems tend to totalise, regarding them as intractable masses of complexity, so conflict-prone and/or intractable that they defy definition and solution. By contrast, we put forward a more nuanced analysis, arguing that complex problems vary in the extent of their wickedness, via such dimensions as their cognitive complexity or the diversity and irreconcilability of the actors or institutions involved. We propose a typology of different forms of wicked problems. A second shortcoming, linked to intractability, is that the favoured means of tackling wicked problems has tended towards ?one best way approaches, most commonly collaboration with key stakeholders. Moreover, particular forms of collaboration tend to be routinely applied in one-size-fits-all fashion to a variety of situations notably with a plethora of actors, and a focus on governance rather than implementation management. We put forward a contingency framework, based on our typology, proposing which types of collaboration are suitable for which types of problem. Finally, we argue for a more realistic standard of success in dealing with wicked problems, especially the most difficult ones. To call for the ?solving? of these problems is to set up a standard which is not only impossible but also perhaps unnecessary. We argue that we do not so much ?solve? wicked problems as make progress towards improvement or towards better managing them. We spell out a more realistic version of progress.

Three competing interpretations of policy problems: tame and wicked problems through the lenses of population aging
Non UofA Access

Patrik Marier and Isabelle Van Pevenage.
Policy and Society 2017 07/03;36(3):430-445
This contribution presents competing lenses of population aging as policy problems and it compares their impact on the treatment of policy problems. Three lenses are analysed: intergenerational, biomedical and social gerontological. The intergenerational lens treats population aging as a new form of class conflict along age groups. The social gerontological lens claims that population aging is first and foremost a social issue and it stands in opposition to the dominance of biomedical approaches that treat aging as a pathology. The presence of these three alternative conceptions of the policy problem is indicative of the complexity surrounding population aging and the importance of having divergent definitions of policy problems. Via an analysis of informal care giving in the Canadian context, this contribution also presents a comparison of the three lenses with a focus on the roots of these conceptualisations in various disciplines, their prevalence in various public organisations, and the policy consequences of their strength or weakness.

Limit, lean or listen? A typology of low-value care that gives direction in de-implementation.
Non UofA Access

E. W. Verkerk, M. A. C. Tanke, R. B. Kool, S. A. van Dulmen and G. P. Westert.
Int J Qual Health Care 2018 May 7
Overuse of unnecessary care is widespread around the world. This so-called low-value care provides no benefit for the patient, wastes resources and can cause harm. The concept of low-value care is broad and there are different reasons for care to be of low-value. Hence, different strategies might be necessary to reduce it and awareness of this may help in designing a de-implementation strategy. Based on a literature scan and discussions with experts, we identified three types of low-value care. Results: The type ineffective care is proven ineffective, such as antibiotics for a viral infection. Inefficient care is in essence effective, but is of low-value through inefficient provision or inappropriate intensity, such as chronic benzodiazepine use. Unwanted care is in essence appropriate for the clinical condition it targets, but is low-value since it does not fit the patients’ preferences, such as a treatment aimed to cure a patient that prefers palliative care. In this paper, we argue that these three types differ in their most promising strategy for de-implementation and that our typology gives direction in choosing whether to limit, lean or listen. Conclusion: We developed a typology that provides insight in the different reasons for care to be of low-value. We believe that this typology is helpful in designing a tailor-made strategy for reducing low-value care.

The Kansas PEAK 2.0 Program Facilitates the Diffusion of Culture-Change Innovation to Unlikely Adopters
Non UofA Access

L. Hermer, L. Cornelison, M. L. Kaup, J. L. Poey, R. Stone and G. Doll.
Gerontologist 2018 May 8;58(3):530-539
Recent studies have shown that nursing homes adopting culture change are disproportionately not-for-profit and CCRC-affiliated, with greater quality of care. Through the lens of diffusion-of-innovation theory, we examined whether Kansas’ Medicaid pay-for-performance program PEAK 2.0, which incents the adoption of person-centered care (PCC) and worker empowerment, succeeded in its goal of spreading adoption to atypical- as well as typical-adopting nursing homes. Design and Methods: We conducted a retrospective cohort study of 349 nursing homes in the state during PEAK 2.0’s existence, 2012-2016. We constructed a data set combining state program data, provider characteristics from CMS data sets, and other demographic information from the 2010 Census. With a series of logistic regression models, we tested whether program joiners differed from nonjoiners by profit status and other demographic factors, as well as quality-related and case-mix factors. Results: We found that in PEAK 2.0’s first year, 2012, adopters were more likely to be not-for-profit and part of a CCRC, with higher occupancy rates and greater quality. However, by 2013 these associations became marginal, and in 2014 and 2015, we found no differences between program joiners and nonjoiners. Implications: The results show that by PEAK 2.0’s third year, the program-with its large financial incentive and other potentially important characteristics-succeeded in attracting a large set of nursing homes whose demographics were representative of those in the state. This is important because other studies have found that the adoption of PCC is associated with improved health and well-being for residents.

Transformational change in health and care: reports from the field

The King’s Fund, May 2018
The King’s Fund has been calling for transformational change to respond to the growing pressures and demands in the health and care system. We have argued that transformation is best brought about ‘from within’, led by frontline staff and service users, and that it needs collaborative and distributed leadership styles.

Building Improvement Capacity and Capability: A “Dosing” Approach (US)

IHI, 2018
This article describes IHI’s “dosing” approach that establishes and deploys targeted levels of improvement knowledge and skills throughout an organization to build improvement capacity and capability. The key point of the approach is that not everyone in the organization needs to have the same depth of knowledge about science of improvement concepts, methods, and tools.


Back to top of page       Back to top of publications

Organizational Culture and Change

Adaptation of a nursing home culture change research instrument for frontline staff quality improvement use.
Non UofA Access

C. W. Hartmann, J. A. Palmer, W. L. Mills, et al.
Psychol Serv 2017 Aug;14(3):337-346
Enhanced interpersonal relationships and meaningful resident engagement in daily life are central to nursing home cultural transformation, yet these critical components of person-centered care may be difficult for frontline staff to measure using traditional research instruments. To address the need for easy-to-use instruments to help nursing home staff members evaluate and improve person-centered care, the psychometric method of cognitive-based interviewing was used to adapt a structured observation instrument originally developed for researchers and nursing home surveyors. Twenty-eight staff members from 2 Veterans Health Administration (VHA) nursing homes participated in 1 of 3 rounds of cognitive-based interviews, using the instrument in real-life situations. Modifications to the original instrument were guided by a cognitive processing model of instrument refinement. Following 2 rounds of cognitive interviews, pretesting of the revised instrument, and another round of cognitive interviews, the resulting set of 3 short instruments mirrored the concepts of the original longer instrument but were significantly easier for frontline staff to understand and use. Final results indicated frontline staff found the revised instruments feasible to use and clinically relevant in measuring and improving the lived experience of a changing culture. This article provides a framework for developing or adapting other measurement tools for frontline culture change efforts in nursing homes, in addition to reporting on a practical set of instruments to measure aspects of person-centered care.

Identifying barriers to culture change: A qualitative analysis of the obstacles to delivering resident-centered care.
Non UofA Access

R. L. Engle, D. A. Tyler, K. E. Gormley, et al.
Psychol Serv 2017 Aug;14(3):316-326
A growing number of healthcare organizations have moved from traditional, institutional nursing home models to ones that emphasize culture change, or resident-centered care (RCC). In 2006, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) began implementing a number of changes to VA nursing homes, now called Community Living Centers (CLCs), to provide veterans with a more resident-centered and homelike environment. This study aimed to understand the barriers CLC staff face when delivering RCC. Ten CLCs were included on the basis of their performance levels on RCC and quality of care. Semistructured interviews that focused on facility efforts in RCC and quality were conducted with all levels of staff. Interviews were systematically content coded. We found similarities and differences in barriers reported at high- and low-performing sites. Staff across all performance levels cited 5 main categories of barriers to delivering RCC: staffing, resources, acuity of residents, RCC and quality of care conflicts, and regulations. Staff in high-performing sites reported fewer barriers to RCC, although 1 barrier cited was difficulty coordinating RCC across departments. Staff in low-performing sites reported additional categories of barriers related to administrator turnover/lack of guidance, CLC culture/staff morale, and difficulty working with residents and families. As RCC continues to spread, it is important to anticipate the barriers to implementing these practices. Particular focus on regulatory, leadership, organizational, workforce, and process factors may help organizations avoid or reduce barriers to RCC. Given their training and skill set, mental health providers may be uniquely situated to assist staff in overcoming these barriers.

Barriers and Facilitators to Implementing a Change Initiative in Long-Term Care Using the INTERACT® Quality Improvement Program.
Non UofA Access

R. M. Tappen, D. G. Wolf, Z. Rahemi, et al.
Health Care Manag (Frederick) 2017 Jul/Sep;36(3):219-230
Implementation of major organizational change initiatives presents a challenge for long-term care leadership. Implementation of the INTERACT(R) (Interventions to Reduce Acute Care Transfers) quality improvement program, designed to improve the management of acute changes in condition and reduce unnecessary emergency department visits and hospitalizations of nursing home residents, serves as an example to illustrate the facilitators and barriers to major change in long-term care. As part of a larger study of the impact of INTERACT(R) on rates of emergency department visits and hospitalizations, staff of 71 nursing homes were called monthly to follow-up on their progress and discuss successful facilitating strategies and any challenges and barriers they encountered during the yearlong implementation period. Themes related to barriers and facilitators were identified. Six major barriers to implementation were identified: the magnitude and complexity of the change (35%), instability of facility leadership (27%), competing demands (40%), stakeholder resistance (49%), scarce resources (86%), and technical problems (31%). Six facilitating strategies were also reported: organization-wide involvement (68%), leadership support (41%), use of administrative authority (14%), adequate training (66%), persistence and oversight on the part of the champion (73%), and unfolding positive results (14%). Successful introduction of a complex change such as the INTERACT(R) quality improvement program in a long-term care facility requires attention to the facilitators and barriers identified in this report from those at the frontline.

Associations among unit leadership and unit climates for implementation in acute care: a cross-sectional study
Non UofA Access

C. J. Shuman, X. Liu, M. L. Aebersold, D. Tschannen, J. Banaszak-Holl and M. G. Titler.
Implement Sci 2018 Apr 25;13(1):62-018-0753-6
Nurse managers have a pivotal role in fostering unit climates supportive of implementing evidence-based practices (EBPs) in care delivery. EBP leadership behaviors and competencies of nurse managers and their impact on practice climates are widely overlooked in implementation science. The purpose of this study was to examine the contributions of nurse manager EBP leadership behaviors and nurse manager EBP competencies in explaining unit climates for EBP implementation in adult medical-surgical units. METHODS: A multi-site, multi-unit cross-sectional research design was used to recruit the sample of 24 nurse managers and 553 randomly selected staff nurses from 24 adult medical-surgical units from 7 acute care hospitals in the Northeast and Midwestern USA. Staff nurse perceptions of nurse manager EBP leadership behaviors and unit climates for EBP implementation were measured using the Implementation Leadership Scale and Implementation Climate Scale, respectively. EBP competencies of nurse managers were measured using the Nurse Manager EBP Competency Scale. Participants were emailed a link to an electronic questionnaire and asked to respond within 1 month. The contributions of nurse manager EBP leadership behaviors and competencies in explaining unit climates for EBP implementation were estimated using mixed-effects models controlling for nurse education and years of experience on current unit and accounting for the variability across hospitals and units. Significance level was set at alpha < .05. RESULTS: Two hundred sixty-four staff nurses and 22 nurse managers were included in the final sample, representing 22 units in 7 hospitals. Nurse manager EBP leadership behaviors (p < .001) and EBP competency (p = .008) explained 52.4% of marginal variance in unit climate for EBP implementation. Leadership behaviors uniquely explained 45.2% variance. The variance accounted for by the random intercepts for hospitals and units (p < .001) and years of nursing experience in current unit (p < .05) were significant but level of nursing education was not. CONCLUSION: Nurse managers are significantly related to unit climates for EBP implementation primarily through their leadership behaviors. Future implementation studies should consider the leadership of nurse managers in creating climates supportive of EBP implementation.

Back to top of page       Back to top of publications

Research Practice and Methodology

Structured methodology review identified seven (RETREAT) criteria for selecting qualitative evidence synthesis approaches.
Non UofA Access

A. Booth, J. Noyes, K. Flemming, et al.
J Clin Epidemiol 2018 Mar 13
OBJECTIVE: To compare and contrast different methods of qualitative evidence synthesis (QES) against criteria identified from the literature and to map their attributes to inform selection of the most appropriate QES method to answer research questions addressed by qualitative research. STUDY DESIGN AND SETTING: Electronic databases, citation searching and a study register were used to identify studies reporting QES methods. Attributes compiled from 26 methodological papers (2001-2014) were used as a framework for data extraction. Data were extracted into summary tables by one reviewer and then considered within the author team. RESULTS: We identified seven considerations determining choice of methods from the methodological literature, encapsulated within the mnemonic RETREAT (Review question – Epistemology – Time/Timescale – Resources – Expertise – Audience and purpose – Type of Data). We mapped 15 different published QES methods against these seven criteria. The final framework focuses on stand-alone QES methods but may also hold potential when integrating quantitative and qualitative data. CONCLUSION: These findings offer a contemporary perspective as a conceptual basis for future empirical investigation of the advantages and disadvantages of different methods of QES. It is hoped that this will inform appropriate selection of QES approaches.

Back to top of page       Back to top of publications


Palliative care during the final week of life of older people in nursing homes: A register-based study.
Non UofA Access

J. Smedback, J. Ohlen, K. Arestedt, A. Alvariza, C. J. Furst and C. Hakanson.
Palliat Support Care 2017 Aug;15(4):417-424
Our aim was to explore the presence of symptoms, symptom relief, and other key aspects of palliative care during the final week of life among older people residing in nursing homes. METHOD: Our study employed data from the Swedish Palliative Care Register on all registered individuals aged 60 and older who had died in nursing homes during the years 2011 and 2012. Variables pertaining to monitoring and treatment of symptoms, end-of-life discussions, circumstances around the death, and the individual characteristics of deceased individuals were explored using descriptive statistics. RESULTS: The most common underlying causes of death among the 49,172 deceased nursing home residents were circulatory diseases (42.2%) and dementia (22.7%). The most prevalent symptom was pain (58.7%), followed by rattles (42.4%), anxiety (33.0%), confusion (21.8%), shortness of breath (14.0%), and nausea (11.1%). Pain was the symptom with the highest degree of total relief (46.3%), whereas shortness of breath and confusion were totally relieved in 6.1 and 4.3% of all individuals, respectively. The use of valid instruments for symptom assessment was reported for pain in 12.3% and for other symptoms in 7.8% of subjects. The most prevalent individual prescriptions for injection PRN (pro re nata, according to circumstances) were for pain treatment (79.5%) and rattles (72.8%). End-of-life discussions were performed with 27.3% of all the deceased individuals and with 53.9% of their relatives. Of all individuals, 82.1% had someone present at death, and 15.8% died alone. Of all the nursing home resident deaths recorded, 45.3% died in their preferred place. SIGNIFICANCE OF RESULTS: There were large variations in degree of relief from different symptoms during the final week of life. Pain was the most prevalent symptom, and it was also the symptom with the highest proportion of total/partial relief. Other symptoms were less prevalent but also less well-relieved. Our results indicate a need for improvement of palliative care in nursing home settings, focusing on management of distressing symptoms and promotion of end-of-life discussions.

Public perspectives toward long-term care staff intervention in demented resident’s sexual relationships
Non UofA Access

E. Yelland and M. H. Stanfield.
Dementia (London) 2018 Jan 1:1471301218772915
Sexual expression is an essential component of older adults’ quality of life, including those with lower cognitive functioning. Issues have been raised with long-term care facility policies related to aspects of staff intervention, permissibility of degree of intimacy, and how involved partners of residents with cognitive decline may be in decision-making processes. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: This study used a multiple segment factorial vignette to explore the attitudes of the public toward a dementia-caused non-spousal sexual relationship in a long-term care facility. Specific elements examined included the degree of intimacy, obligation of long-term care staff to intervene in the relationship, and the healthy spouse’s disposition. Respondents ( N = 318) were contacted using a list-assisted random-digit dialing method and read a version of the vignette with the independent variables randomly generated. Two logistic regression models and one ordinal regression model were used to analyze the main effects of the independent design variables and respondent characteristics. Results The majority of respondents report the need for long-term care staff to intervene in sexual relationships and an obligation to inform the healthy spouse of a resident’s sexual relationship. Results suggest differences of opinion exist based on respondent characteristics of education and religiosity. Discussion and implications: Public opinion is in favor of long-term care facilities incorporating spousal involvement into decisions regarding a cognitively impaired resident’s ability to engage in an intimate relationship. Implications for long-term care policy focusing on staff training about sexual expression and intervention in addition to incorporating the spouse into decision-making processes are discussed.

A physical exercise program using music-supported video-based training in older adults in nursing homes suffering from dementia: a feasibility study
Non UofA Access

J. Spildooren, I. Speetjens, J. Abrahams, P. Feys and A. Timmermans.
Aging Clin Exp Res 2018 Apr 28
Motivation towards an exercise program is higher in a small group setting in comparison to individual therapy. Due to attentional problems, group exercises are difficult for people with Alzheimer disease (AD). This study evaluates the feasibility of a music-supported video-based group exercise program in older adults suffering from AD. METHODS: Five participants with moderate AD were recruited from a nursing home. A progressive physical exercise program using a video-based training with musical accompaniment was performed and digitally recorded to investigate the adherence and performed accuracy of the exercises. RESULTS: The overall participation during the exercises was 84.1%. The quality of the performance was for all exercises above the cut-off scores. CONCLUSION: A music-supported video-based group exercise program is feasible in persons with AD. The participants were motivated and the expectations towards the program increased over time. Music seemed an important factor for attention in participants with AD.

Demand of long-term care and benefit eligibility across European countries.
Non UofA Access

L. Carrino, C. E. Orso and G. Pasini.
Health Econ 2018 Apr 25
In this paper, we study how elderly individuals adjust their informal long-term care utilization to changes in the provision of formal care. Despite this is crucial to design effective policies of formal elderly care, empirical evidence is scant due to the lack of credible identification strategies to account for the endogeneity of formal care. We propose a novel instrument, an index that captures individuals’ eligibility status for the long-term care programs implemented in the region of residence. Our estimates, which are robust to a number of different specifications, suggest that higher formal care provision would lead to an increase in informal care utilization as well. In the context of current theoretical economic model of care use, this result points to the existence of a substantial unmet demand of care among older people in Europe.

Assessment of Depression in Elderly. Is Perceived Social Support Related? A Nursing Home Study : Depression and Social Support in Elderly.
Non UofA Access

P. Patra, V. Alikari, E. C. Fradelos, et al.
Adv Exp Med Biol 2017;987:139-150
Geriatric depression is more common in nursing homes and social support is a mechanism that mitigates the stressors of life factors and simultaneously promotes wellness and health. The purpose of the study was to assess the levels of depression and social support among elderly in nursing homes. During the period February 2016-March 2016 170 elderly residents in nursing homes completed the Geriatric Depression Scale-15 (GDS-15) and the Multidimensional Scale of Perceived Social Support (MSPSS). Statistical analysis was conducted with IBM SPSS Statistics 23. 37, 1% of the sample had depressive symptoms. Depression is statistically correlated with age and it is affected by the years of education (p = 0.003), the number of the children (p = 0.006), whether the elderly person is bedridden or not (p < 0.001), the frequency of visits by family members (p < 0.001) and whether the elderly performs activities outside the nursing home (0.001). Higher GDS score had those who were illiterate (6.41), those with one or no children (6.82 and 6.59 respectively), the bedridden (6.70), people without visits from relatives (7.69) and without activities outside (5.64). Also, social support is affected by the family status (p < 0.001), the number of children (p < 0.001), the frequency of visits by relatives (p < 0.001) and whether the elderly performs activities outside the foundation (p < 0.008). Higher MSPSS score had those who were married (61.60), those who had four children (63.50), people who accept visits from relatives every day (64.58) and people who do activities outside the institution (58.07). The appearance of this increased rate of depression symptoms in this elderly population leads to the need for more aid social support.

Health Effects of the Relocation of Patients With Dementia: A Scoping Review to Inform Medical and Policy Decision-Making
Non UofA Access

F. V. M. Ryman, J. C. Erisman, L. M. Darvey, J. Osborne, E. Swartsenburg and E. V. Syurina.
Gerontologist 2018 Apr 28
Research into the relocation (including international relocation) of people with dementia is increasingly important due to the aging population and latest developments in the international politics (including globalization and concerns over international migration). There is need for an overview of the health effects of relocation to facilitate and inform decision- and policy-making regarding these relocations. The aim of this literature review was to provide insight into the physical, psychological, and social consequences of varied types of relocations of older adults suffering from dementia. Research Design and Methods: A scoping literature review with a systematic search was performed in PubMed, Web of Science, PsychInfo, JSTOR, and ScienceDirect. The articles dealing with subject of relocation of older adults from 1994 to 2017 were included and analyzed. Methodological quality assessment was performed for all articles. Results: Final list included 13 articles. The effects of relocation were discussed in terms of mortality and morbidity. In most studies, the health effects of the relocation of older adults suffering from dementia were negative. A decline in physical, mental, behavioral, and functional well-being was reported. The most recurring effect was a higher level of stress, which is more problematic for patients with dementia. In general, unless it is carefully planned, it is best to avoid changing lives of people with dementia and it is recommended to actively work to reduce their exposure to stress. Discussion and Implications: The outcomes of the study suggest definite evidence for the negative effects of relocation of the older adults. This research aims to be used as the support of the legal and medical decisions of relocation of patients with dementia.

Prognostic Effect of Changes in Physical Function Over Prior Year on Subsequent Mortality and Long-Term Nursing Home Admission.
Non UofA Access

T. M. Gill, L. Han, E. A. Gahbauer, L. Leo-Summers and H. G. Allore.
J Am Geriatr Soc 2018 May 2
To evaluate the prognostic effect of changes in physical function at different intervals over the prior year on subsequent outcomes after accounting for present function. DESIGN: Prospective longitudinal study. SETTING: Greater New Haven, Connecticut, from March 1998 to January 2006. PARTICIPANTS: Community-living persons aged 71 and older who completed an 18-month comprehensive assessment (N=658). MEASUREMENTS: Disability in 13 activities of daily living, instrumental activities of daily living, and mobility activities was assessed at the 18-month comprehensive assessment and at 12, 6, and 3 months before 18 months. Time to death and long-term nursing home admission, defined as 3 months and longer, were ascertained for up to 5 years after 18 months. RESULTS: In the bivariate models, disability at 18 months and change in disability between 18 months and each of the 3 prior time-points (12, 6, 3 months) were significantly associated with time to death. The risk of death, for example, increased by 24% for each 1-point increase in 18-month disability score (on a scale from 0 to 13) and by 22% for each 1-point change in disability score between 18 months and prior 12 months (on a scale from -13 to 13). In a set of multivariable models with and without covariates, the associations were maintained for 18-month disability but not for change in disability between 18 months and each of the 3 prior time-points. The results were comparable for time to long-term nursing home admission except that 2 of the associations were not statistically significant. CONCLUSION: When evaluating risk of adverse outcomes, such as death and long-term nursing home admission, an assessment of change in physical function at different intervals over the prior year, although a strong bivariate predictor, did not provide useful prognostic information beyond that available from current level of function.

The Impact of the Physical Environment on Depressive Symptoms of Older Residents Living in Care Homes: A Mixed Methods Study.
Non UofA Access

R. Potter, B. Sheehan, R. Cain, J. Griffin and P. A. Jennings.
Gerontologist 2018 May 8;58(3):438-447
Forty percent of residents living in care homes in the United Kingdom have significant depressive symptoms. Care homes can appear to be depressing places, but whether the physical environment of homes directly affects depression in care home residents is unknown. This study explores the relationship between the physical environment and depressive symptoms of older people living in care homes. Research Design and Methods: In a prospective cohort study the physical environment of 50 care homes were measured using the Sheffield Care Environment Assessment Matrix (SCEAM) and depressive symptoms of 510 residents measured using the Geriatric Depression Scale (GDS-15). The study was supplemented with semi-structured interviews with residents living in the care homes. Quantitative data were analyzed using multi-level modeling, and qualitative data analyzed using a thematic framework approach. Results: The overall physical environment of care homes (overall SCEAM score) did not predict depressive symptoms. Controlling for dependency, social engagement, and home type, having access to outdoor space was the only environmental variable to significantly predict depressive symptoms. Residents interviewed reported that access to outdoor space was restricted in many ways: locked doors, uneven foot paths, steep steps, and needing permission or assistance to go outside. Discussion and Implications: We provide new evidence to suggest that access to outdoor space predicts depressive symptoms in older people living in care home. Interventions aimed at increasing access to outdoor spaces could positively affect depressive symptoms in older people.

Crucial aspects promoting meaning and purpose in life: perceptions of nursing home residents.

Non UofA Access

J. Drageset, G. Haugan and O. Tranvag.
BMC Geriatr 2017 Oct 30;17(1):254-017-0650-x
Meaning and purpose in life are fundamental to human beings. In changing times, with an aging population and increased life expectancy, the need for health care services and long-term care is likely to grow. More deeply understanding how older long-term care residents perceive meaning and purpose in life is critical for improving the quality of care and the residents’ quality of life. The purpose of this study was to explore crucial aspects promoting nursing home residents’ experience of meaning and purpose in everyday life. METHOD: An exploratory hermeneutical design with qualitative interviews for collecting data. RESULTS: Four key experiences were found to promote meaning and purpose in life: 1) physical and mental well-being, 2) belonging and recognition, 3) personally treasured activities and 4) spiritual closeness and connectedness. CONCLUSION: In supporting meaning and purpose in life of nursing home residents, the residents’ everyday well-being should be a central focus of care and facilitate personally treasured activities. Focused attention should also be given to the meaning-making power of experiencing belonging, recognition and spiritual connectedness.

Advice to NHS and Social Care Staff On Gathering Feedback from People with Dementia and their Family Carers/Supporters (UK)

Sheffield Dementia Involvement Group, 2018
Sheffield Dementia Involvement Group (SHINDIG) provides a forum for people with dementia (and their family carers / supporters) in Sheffield to share their views and experiences of living with dementia and of health and social care services. The group has been running for five years, and meets four times a year. The SHINDIG group have recently produced the following report giving advice for staff about gathering feedback on their experience of services from people living with dementia.

Rapid Synthesis Identifying Performance Measures, Indicators and Targets to Monitor and Evaluate Dementia Strategies

Wilson MG, Mattison CA, Waddell K. Hamilton
Canada: McMaster Health Forum, 6 April 2018.
Creating system-level strategies has been identified as a critical component for making progress towards enhancing care for people living dementia and their caregivers. This rapid synthesis was requested to identify performance measures, approaches or frameworks that can be used to measure, monitor and evaluate the performance of dementia strategies.


Back to top of page     Back to top of publications


PCORI: Engagement in Health Research Literature Explorer

Finding literature on engagement in health research can be challenging, because there are no standard search terms or language for describing what engagement means in this context. So, PCORI staff members have put together a searchable list of publications on engagement in health research. This resource is sortable by article type, types of stakeholders engaged, and phase(s) of research in which engagement occurred, from identifying research questions to sharing study results. Articles are listed if they met our search and inclusion criteria.

Community Engagement Toolkit for Care Homes

This How To Guide will give care home managers and staff guidance on how to create a community within care homes. The guide will explain how to bring members of the local community into the home to volunteer, befriend, run activities and form friendship groups.

Back to top of page


The Never-Ending Misuse of Antipsychotics In Nursing Homes

How to Overcome “Improvement Resistant” Challenges: Try to design programs, processes, or systems for patients?

Systematic Reviews & Meta-Analyses: A 5-Step Checkup

Some Dementia Patients Increasingly Given Antipsychotics, Study Finds (US)

Frailty can be just as grievous and irremediable as cancer

Straw man and the accuracy of rapid reviews

The art of caring: Why nursing matters more than ever

Penn Nursing Think Tank: A National Conversation is Essential to Addressing Challenging Needs of an Aging Population (US)

Back to top of page

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.