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Keywords:

  • dementia;
  • case management;
  • caregivers;
  • long-term care;
  • hospitalization;
  • meta-analysis;
  • systematic review;
  • resource utilization;
  • emergency department visits;
  • randomized controlled trials

ABSTRACT

Objectives

The objective of our study is to evaluate the effectiveness of dementia case management compared with usual care on reducing long-term care placement, hospitalization, and emergency department visits for adult patients with dementia. We also sought to evaluate the effectiveness of this intervention on delaying time to long-term care placement and hospitalization.

Methods

We searched electronic databases supplemented by bibliographies and conference proceedings for randomized controlled trials testing the effectiveness of dementia case management in reducing resource utilization in a population of caregiver–care recipient dyads living in the community. We meta-analyzed the risk ratio (RR) and weighted mean differences of long-term care placement and the RR of hospital admissions. Pooled estimates were further stratified by study characteristics and measures of study quality.

Results

Seventeen studies were included in the meta-analysis. The overall pooled RR of long-term care placement was 0.94 (95% confidence interval [0.85, 1.03]; p = 0.227) for dementia case management compared with usual care. Stratification by follow-up duration indicated a statistically significant reduction in risk of long-term care placement when follow-up duration was less than 18 months (RR 0.61, 95% confidence interval [0.41, 0.91], p = 0.015). There was no effect of dementia case management compared with usual care for the other outcomes.

Conclusion

Dementia case management demonstrated a short-term positive effect on reducing the risk of long-term care placement among older people with dementia residing in the community. However, other sources of resource utilization and more extended effects of dementia case management on risk of long-term care placement warrant further investigation. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.