Dementia research advances best practice for care

Research has driven a major update in guidance to improve diagnosis, management and care for dementia

Dementia research advances best practice for care
28 June 2018

Dementia research advances best practice for care

Research has driven a major update in guidance to improve diagnosis, management and care for dementia

Studies conducted by clinicians and researchers at CPFT, working closely with people living with dementia, have contributed to the knowledge base behind new guidelines released by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) this month.

CPFT is a top performer in the East of England for recruitment to dementia studies. Recognising their contribution, NICE advises that all people with dementia should be provided with information on research studies they could participate in. 1

Professor John O’Brien, Honorary Consultant in Old Age Psychiatry at CPFT and NIHR Specialty Lead for Dementia was a member of the group that helped to formulate the new NICE guidelines, and said:

“I am delighted that the guidelines recognise the importance of research, and recommend that health and social care professionals should help people living with dementia and their carers find out about opportunities to take part in research, and empower them to make their own decisions about getting involved.”

“The guidance for health and social care professionals shares expert advice on the best evidence based care for people with dementia. This major advance in guidance should improve the diagnosis, management and care of all those with dementia, with new advice on using cognitive tests in primary care, using diagnostic markers in
secondary care, follow-up care, co-prescription of anti-dementia drugs, support for
people with dementia and their carers, end of life care and staff training.

“Obviously the guidelines are based on the best international evidence base available, but our research at CPFT has a major impact through building the evidence base to inform best clinical practice, not just in the UK, but worldwide. We have taken part in several studies, including the DOMINO study looking at how to best use anti-dementia drugs, and the SADD study that looked at the effectiveness of antidepressants in treating depression that occurs in dementia.” 

Professor O’Brien has co-authored a summary of the new guidance for dementia assessment, management and support and key updates for clinical practice. Click to access the full BMJ article.

Currently it is estimated that 850,000 people in the UK are living with dementia2, and the only way to find new and better ways to treat and care for those affected by the condition is to do more research. But researchers rely on people finding out about suitable studies and volunteering to take part.

NICE recommends that health and care professionals should help people living with dementia and their carers find out about opportunities to take part in research, and empower them to make their own decisions about getting involved.

One way to do this is to provide information about Join Dementia Research3, a UK-wide service that enables people with dementia and their carers to register their interest and matches volunteers with the most appropriate studies, with no obligation. Current research studies range from clinical trials of new treatments to surveys identifying what works in improving the quality of life of people with dementia and their carers.

Find out more and register today: https://www.joindementiaresearch.nihr.ac.uk/  

  1. Dementia: assessment, management and support for people living with dementia and their carers, NICE guideline, 20 June 2018 https://www.nice.org.uk/guidance/ng97/resources/dementia-assessment-management-and-support-for-people-living-with-dementia-and-their-carers-pdf-1837760199109
  2. https://www.dementiastatistics.org/statistics/numbers-of-people-in-the-uk/Source: Prince, M et al. (2014) Dementia UK: Update Second Edition report produced by King’s College London and the London School of Economics for the Alzheimer’s Society
  3.  Join Dementia Research is funded by the Department of Health and Social Care and delivered in partnership with the National Institute for Health ResearchAlzheimer ScotlandAlzheimer's Research UKand Alzheimer's Society.

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Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust
Elizabeth House, Fulbourn Hospital
Cambridge, CB21 5EF

T 01223 219400 (open 8:30am to 5pm)
F 01480 398501

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