To risk or to restrain? Involuntary treatment use in people with dementia living at home

Angela Maria Herma Jozefina Mengelers

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisInternal

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51% of people with dementia living at home receive involuntary treatment, defined as care to which someone resists and/or does not provide consent for. Examples include non-consensual care (forced intake of food or fluids and restricting one’s freedom of living), psychotropic medication such as antipsychotics and antidepressants, and physical restraints such as locking the (front)door and the use of bedrails. Involuntary treatment has several negative consequences and professional and family caregivers need to be supported to prevent involuntary treatment use. The first aim of this research was to 1) gain insight into how often involuntary treatment is used and by whom, 2) study professional and family caregivers’ attitudes towards involuntary treatment and 3) how family caregivers experience dealing with care dilemmas that can lead to involuntary treatment. The second aim was to develop and test an intervention to provide professional and family caregivers with knowledge, skills and tools to prevent involuntary treatment use in people with dementia living at home. The intervention consists of policy, workshops, coaching and alternatives.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Maastricht University
  • Hamers, Jan, Supervisor
  • Verbeek, Hilde, Supervisor
  • Capezuti, Elizabeth, Supervisor, External person
  • Bleijlevens, Michel, Co-Supervisor
Award date14 Jun 2021
Place of PublicationMaastricht
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • dementia
  • home care
  • involuntary care
  • coercion
  • professional caregivers
  • family caregivers

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