Non-pharmacological interventions as a best practice strategy in people with dementia living in nursing homes. A systematic review

E. Cabrera, C. Sutcliffe, H. Verbeek, K. Saks, M. Soto-Martin, G. Meyer, H. Leino-Kilpi, S. Karlsson, A. Zabalegui, the RightTimePlaceCare Consortium

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11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Two-thirds of nursing home residents suffer from dementia and there is a need for effective and efficient interventions with meaningful outcomes for these individuals. This study aims to identify current best practices in non-pharmacological interventions in nursing homes.

Methods: A systematic literature review was conducted, following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) declaration guideline. Studies and Randomized Controlled Trials (RCT) evaluating non-pharmacological interventions focused on improving the Quality of Care (QoC) and/or Quality of Life (QoL) of people with dementia (PwD) living in nursing homes were included. For individual study evaluation, the Cochrane Collaboration risk of bias assessment tool was used.

Results: A total of 31 articles were included and five main categories emerged: psychosocial and educational, physical activity, sensorial therapies, staff-focused interventions and complex interventions. Psychosocial interventions were the most exhaustively studied and evaluated interventions. Few studies related to physical therapy were identified and they did not provide enough evidence of their effectiveness. Therapeutic touch was revealed to have positive effects on residents with dementia.

Conclusion: Psychosocial interventions have been shown to have the potential to improve the QoL and QoC of people with dementia in nursing homes. Before implementation of the intervention, it is recommended that activities are adjusted according to residents' characteristics and external factors controlled to achieve effectiveness and to structure a well-designed intervention. However, there is not enough evidence to support the effectiveness of non-pharmacological interventions in general. Further well-designed research is needed on non-pharmacological interventions in nursing facilities. (C) 2014 Elsevier Masson SAS and European Union Geriatric Medicine Society. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)134-150
Number of pages17
JournalEuropean Geriatric Medicine
Volume6
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2015

Keywords

  • Non-pharmacological interventions
  • Best practice
  • Dementia
  • Nursing home
  • Systematic review
  • RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED-TRIAL
  • QUALITY-OF-LIFE
  • BRIGHT LIGHT THERAPY
  • CLINICAL-TRIAL
  • PSYCHOSOCIAL INTERVENTIONS
  • NEUROPSYCHIATRIC SYMPTOMS
  • REMINISCENCE THERAPY
  • BEHAVIORAL SYMPTOMS
  • ELDERLY PERSONS
  • USUAL CARE

Cite this

Cabrera, E., Sutcliffe, C., Verbeek, H., Saks, K., Soto-Martin, M., Meyer, G., Leino-Kilpi, H., Karlsson, S., Zabalegui, A., & RightTimePlaceCare Consortium, T. (2015). Non-pharmacological interventions as a best practice strategy in people with dementia living in nursing homes. A systematic review. European Geriatric Medicine, 6(2), 134-150. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eurger.2014.06.003