Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Geisinger Enrolling Patients, Caregivers in Dementia Care Study

Geisinger is enrolling dementia patients and their caregivers in a national research study that will compare three models of dementia care over an 18-month period.

An estimated 6 million people in the United States are living with dementia. The effects of dementia include memory loss, confusion and disorientation, poor balance and falls, incontinence, swallowing disorders, recurring pneumonia, and behavioral issues. These conditions often lead to caregiver stress and illness. As healthcare systems work to provide the best care for both dementia patients and their caregivers, the D-CARE study will compare three different approaches to dementia care.

Patients and caregivers enrolled in the study will be randomly assigned to one of three groups:

  • health-system-based care, in which patients will see a Geisinger advanced practitioner at Geisinger’s Memory and Cognition clinics in Wilkes-Barre or Bloomsburg;
  • community-based care, where a social worker affiliated with the Alzheimer’s Association will provide regular phone calls and optional in-person visits;
  • enhanced usual care, through which patients and caregivers will be given detailed lists of available local resources, including the Alzheimer’s Association 24/7 helpline.
The lead investigator is Maya Lichtenstein, M.D., Geisinger neurologist.

Patients who have Geisinger primary care providers are eligible. Participants will complete questionnaires at an initial visit and through phone calls at regular intervals throughout the study. Patients will receive $20 at the initial visit and $15 at the 18-month visit (total of $35). Caregivers will receive $20 at the initial visit and at the 18-month visit (total of $40).

Interested patients and caregivers may call 570-808-7215 or visit dcare-study.org for more information.

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