Expert Panel Unveils Recommendations for Home-Based Dementia Care

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BrightFocus Foundation Leads Effort on Aging at Home

Clarksburg MD — A panel of leading researchers and policy experts, funded by BrightFocus Foundation and led by Johns Hopkins University researchers, has released five key recommendations for public and private sector leaders to better support people with dementia living in their own home. The panel noted that the vast majority of people with dementia prefer to remain in their own home, and that home-based dementia care can be less costly to families and taxpayers than care provided through nursing homes or other long-term care facilities.

“Many persons with dementia and their caregivers struggle to navigate a complex and disconnected landscape.  But new models of care are emerging that integrate medical, social, and supportive services that advance person-centered, cost-effective goals of staying at home with dignity, quality of life, and support for family caregivers.  Now is the time to think about a paradigm shift to the home as the nexus of dementia care,” said Quincy Miles Samus, PhD, Associate Professor and Director of Translational Aging Services at Johns Hopkins.

“At BrightFocus we want the rigor of science to be a catalyst in solving challenging problems such as Alzheimer’s.  While we fight to end this disease, we brought together many of the foremost experts to identify best practices, missed opportunities, and knowledge gaps to better help people with Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia remain in their communities,” said BrightFocus President and CEO Stacy Pagos Haller.

The panel developed five core recommendations for home-based dementia care (HBDC):

  1. HBDC should be considered the nexus of new dementia models, from diagnosis to end of life in dementia;

  2. New payment models are needed to support HBDC and to reward integration of care;

  3. A diverse new workforce that spans the care continuum should be prepared urgently;

  4. New technologies to promote communications and monitor safety must be tested, integrated, and deployed; and

  5. Targeted dissemination efforts for HBDC must be employed.

The 15-member multidisciplinary panel consisted of internationally-recognized clinicians, researchers, health economists, and policy makers.  These included experts from the University of Pennsylvania, University of Michigan, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Montgomery County MD Department of Health and Human Services, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and others.

The BrightFocus panel was an integral part of the first-ever NIH summit on Alzheimer’s and dementia caregiving research, a recent two-day conference that will soon announce recommendations to the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services.

Read the full report, Home is where the future is: The BrightFocus Foundation consensus panel on dementia care.

BrightFocus Foundation is a premier source of research funding to defeat Alzheimer’s, macular degeneration, and glaucoma.  We are currently managing a global portfolio of over 175 research projects, a $35 million investment in the bold, innovative science that will find the cures for diseases of mind and sight.