HealthcarePapers 16(2) October 2016 : 64-70.doi:10.12927/hcpap.2017.25000

Without Empowered Patients, Caregivers and Providers, a Community-Based Dementia Care Strategy Will Remain Just That

Samir K Sinha


In trying to cope with the needs of the growing number of people living with dementia (PLWD), jurisdictions around the world have been implementing a variety of strategies, policies and programs to enable better access to the supports they and those who care for them require. Despite considerable efforts that have been undertaken, PLWD and their caregivers still face considerable challenges in pursuing care pathways and community-based supports that can help them avoid premature institutionalization. Morton-Chang et al. (2016) have comprehensively reviewed jurisdictional approaches towards the development of dementia strategies, policies and programs; there is a growing understanding and consensus around the things we need to do as societies to better meet the needs of PLWD and their caregivers; however, progress to date could be best characterized as top-down, patchy and fragmented. This paper builds on Morton-Chang et al.’s (2016) assertion that the development of a comprehensive person and caregiver-centred community-based dementia strategy in Ontario and other parts of Canada is likely achievable, particularly if implemented using a “ground-up” approach that is well-aligned with other government-related initiatives. 



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