Characteristics of rural hospital services for people with dementia: Findings from the Hospital Dementia Services Project
Article first published online: 16 AUG 2013
© 2013 The Authors. Australian Journal of Rural Health © National Rural Health Alliance Inc.
Australian Journal of Rural Health
Volume 21, Issue 4, pages 208–215, August 2013
How to Cite
Bail, K., Hudson, C., Grealish, L., Shannon, K., Ehsen, S., Peut, A., Gibson, D., Draper, B. and Karmel, R. (2013), Characteristics of rural hospital services for people with dementia: Findings from the Hospital Dementia Services Project. Australian Journal of Rural Health, 21: 208–215. doi: 10.1111/ajr.12041
- Issue published online: 16 AUG 2013
- Article first published online: 16 AUG 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 3 MAR 2013
- National Health & Medical Research Council. Grant Number: 465701
- health services accessibility;
- holistic nursing;
- hospital design and construction;
To obtain information about aged care services in rural New South Wales public hospitals, and to describe key operational aspects of their service delivery models.
A mixed methods design was used to combine data collected from: (i) a survey of public hospitals and (ii) qualitative site visits in a sample of eleven rural sites.
Rural public hospitals in NSW, Australia.
Qualitative data were collected from multidisciplinary clinicians, managers and community service providers who participated in site visits in 2010 and from surveys of NSW public hospitals in 2009/10 about aged care and dementia services.
Survey and site visit findings demonstrated that rural hospitals have fewer secure beds for managing patients with disturbed behaviour due to dementia and delirium and fewer speciality aged care staff than metropolitan hospitals. Site visit participants also described how secure environments can aid care for people with dementia even in the absence of clinical specialists.
The care of people with dementia in rural hospitals is constrained by access to specialist aged care staff and the physical environment of the hospital. Clinicians are adept at maximising resources to manage diagnosis and transitions for people with dementia. Further understanding of how key operational aspects of clinical leadership and environmental modifications impact on a range of patient outcomes would be valuable.