Why research translation is important for professionals working with people affected by dementia

As research into dementia is a developing field, there is a limited evidence base to help professionals working with people affected by dementia. The limited evidence and regional differences in the UK Health and Social care systems can make it really hard for professionals to use important new research knowledge and innovations.

As the UK’s leading authority on dementia we want do everything we can to help professionals make use of research evidence and innovations that will help people affected by dementia. By doing this they can provide the best possible care and support for people affected by dementia.

This means working with the right people within the UKs health and social care sector to support them in learning how using new evidence and approaches in their own unique settings.  

We actively fund research projects that test how to use research findings in the real world through our implementation grant scheme.

  • “Namaste Care”, based in care homes, enables staff to cater to the personal needs of residents with advanced dementia, focusing on the “person” rather than the process and protocol. The project is testing how to introduce this into UK care homes
  • The “Life through a lens” project aims to find how to use non-drug treatments to help people with both learning difficulties and dementia manage their symptoms

One past success in this area is the Focussed Intervention Training and Support (FITS) into practice project, that developed a training programme for care home staff to reduce the use of antipsychotic drug use in people in dementia. In 2016, Following completion of the research project the FITS training programme was launched at Worcester university.

If you are interested developing networks with colleagues working in research, health and social care relating to dementia we recommend that you join CHAIN (the Contact, Help, Advice and Information Network). CHAIN provides a great opportunity to develop networks and to keep informed of the dementia field; it is an international online mutual support and intelligence network (based in the UK) for people working in health and social care. Alzheimer’s Society are co-facilitators of the dementia subgroup.

CHAIN is multi-professional and cross-organisational, designed to connect like-minded health and social care practitioners, educators, researchers and managers through:

  • Sending occasional targeted emails about resources/opportunities relevant to you;
  • Providing a searchable online directory of members and their interests;
  • Having the opportunity to use CHAIN to broadcast your own questions or other messages

For further information about CHAIN please visit: http://www.chain-network.org.uk/. To join please complete a membership form at: http://www.chain-network.org.uk/join.html

Further reading