Randomized controlled trial of CARE: An intervention to improve outcomes of hospitalized elders and family caregivers.
ABSTRACT In this randomized controlled trial we tested the efficacy of an intervention program (CARE: Creating Avenues for Relative Empowerment) for improving outcomes of hospitalized older adults and their family caregivers (FCGs). FCG-patient dyads (n = 407) were randomized into two groups. The CARE group received a two-session empowerment-educational program 1-2 days post-admission and 1-3 days pre-discharge. The attention control group received a generic information program during the same timeframe. Follow-up was at 2 weeks and 2 months post-discharge. There were no statistically significant differences in patient or FCG outcomes. However, inconsistent evidence of role outcome differences suggests that CARE may benefit certain FCG subgroups instead of being a one-size-fits-all intervention strategy. Closer examination of CARE's mechanisms and effects is needed. © 2012 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Res Nurs Health 35:533-549, 2012.
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ABSTRACT: To examine in depth carers' views and experiences of the delivery of patient care for people with dementia or delirium in an acute general hospital, in order to evaluate a specialist Medical and Mental Health Unit (MMHU) compared with standard hospital wards. This qualitative study complemented the quantitative findings of a randomised controlled trial. Qualitative semistructured interviews were conducted with carers of patients with cognitive impairment admitted to hospital over a 4-month period. A specialist MMHU was developed in an English National Health Service acute hospital aiming to deliver the best-practice care. Specialist mental health staff were integrated with the ward team. All staff received enhanced training in dementia, delirium and person-centred care. A programme of purposeful therapeutic and leisure activities was introduced. The ward environment was optimised to improve patient orientation and independence. A proactive and inclusive approach to family carers was encouraged. 40 carers who had been recruited to a randomised controlled trial comparing the MMHU with standard wards. The main themes identified related closely to family carers' met or unmet expectations and included activities and boredom, staff knowledge, dignity and fundamental care, the ward environment and communication between staff and carers. Carers from MMHU were aware of, and appreciated, improvements relating to activities, the ward environment and staff knowledge and skill in the appropriate management of dementia and delirium. However, communication and engagement of family carers were still perceived as insufficient. Our data demonstrate the extent to which the MMHU succeeded in its goal of providing the best-practice care and improving carer experience, and where deficiencies remained. Neither setting was perceived as neither wholly good nor wholly bad; however, greater satisfaction (and less dissatisfaction) with care was experienced by carers from MMHU compared with standard care wards.BMJ Open 01/2013; 3(12):e004198. · 1.58 Impact Factor