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Caring for patients with dementia in the acute care setting

Butcher, Lesley 2018. Caring for patients with dementia in the acute care setting. British Journal of Nursing 27 (7) , pp. 358-362. 10.12968/bjon.2018.27.7.358

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This article highlights the vulnerability of people with dementia in the acute hospital setting, where they are more likely to experience clinical incidents such as falls, contract infections and be prescribed neuroleptic drugs. This patient group has a significantly longer length of hospital stay and higher mortality rate following discharge compared with those without dementia. As many as one third are discharged to institutionalised care. The article explores the knowledge gap concerning the complexity of caring for a person with dementia and highlights factors that can lead to staff detaching themselves from engaging in meaningful communication with patients. It also discusses the syndrome of ‘cascade iatrogenesis’ in relation to patients' physical and cognitive decline. More emphasis needs to be placed on addressing these issues to ensure the safety and welfare of people with dementia in hospitals. A case study from the author's clinical practice is used to illustrate the issues.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Healthcare Sciences
Publisher: Mark Allen Healthcare
ISSN: 0966-0461
Date of Acceptance: 1 January 2018
Last Modified: 19 Jul 2019 14:51

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