Person-centred care for demented older adults: a qualitative analysis
VWQ Lou1, GKC Law2, XB Zhong1
1 Department of Social Work and Social Administration, The University of Hong Kong
2 Division of Health and Applied Science, SPACE, The University of Hong Kong
1. There was a lack of consensus among formal caregivers about the concept of person-centred care (PCC).
2. Formal caregivers associated PCC with positive and empathic feelings, and believed it to be in line with their professional ethics, principles, and organisational vision, mission, and values. However, ambivalent feelings were recorded when formal caregivers encountered difficulties in practising PCC. Formal caregivers reported good practices in providing daily care that aligned with PCC principles, but also admitted practices involving objectification.
3. Family caregivers and older adults with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) were unfamiliar with PCC, linking it to professional intervention. They were ambivalent about PCC, reporting feelings ranging from respect to helplessness. Family caregivers not only demonstrated elevated tendencies to infantilise older adults with MCI, but also proactively communicated with formal caregivers to achieve personalised care.
4. There should be a thorough discussion about quality dementia care standards in Hong Kong. Dementia care practices must be consolidated with reference to evidence-based interventions. Environmental context should be reviewed to identify barriers to quality care for older adults with dementia. Family caregivers and older adults with dementia should engage in the process of developing dementia care policies and practice guidelines.