HCF Foundation - funded study to improve care for hospitalised dementia patients

Sydney, 28 April 2015 - HCF Research Foundation has pledged more than half a million dollars to a major clinical study into an innovative program which could improve the hospital care experience for patients with dementia, and their carers.

The initial clinical study was conducted by the Clinical Excellence Commission with a commitment of $365,000 from HCF Foundation. Results demonstrated improvements in patient outcomes and carer satisfaction and the Foundation has provided an additional $299,000 in grant funding for further research.

The study analyses the impact of introducing the TOP 5 program, which involves a patient’s primary carer sharing five tips about the patient with clinicians on admission to hospital. The tips are then used by the hospital team to develop a strategy to better manage patient care. The program takes about 20 minutes to implement for each patient.

The research, led by the Clinical Excellence Commission’s Director of Patient Based Care, Dr Karen Luxford, examines the impact of the TOP 5 Program across 17 public and four private hospitals in NSW between 2012 and 2013.

HCF Research Foundation Chair Lisa McIntyre said the TOP 5 research, like many of the Foundation’s funded projects, would enrich the health services available to Australians.

“The TOP 5 Program will vastly improve health outcomes for this vulnerable patient group. It’s a simple, cost-effective strategy that offers rich rewards for both patients and carers,” Ms McIntyre said.

“This research has seen less anxious patients and happier carers. Importantly, it has also shown a significant drop in falls and a reduction in the use of medications. We look forward to the second phase of the research, which will see the TOP 5 program applied across different care settings including transitioning between hospitals, aged care facilities, ambulance and the community.”

HCF Foundation - funded study

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