Improving access to dementia care: development and evaluation of a rural and remote memory clinic.
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Aging & mental health, ISSN: 1364-6915, Vol: 13, Issue: 1, Page: 17-30
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- Nursing; Medicine; Alzheimer's disease; rural; evaluation/effectiveness; screening and diagnosis; service provision
The availability, accessibility and acceptability of services are critical factors in rural health service delivery. In Canada, the aging population and the consequent increase in prevalence of dementia challenge the ability of many rural communities to provide specialized dementia care. This paper describes the development, operation and evaluation of an interdisciplinary memory clinic designed to improve access to diagnosis and management of early stage dementia for older persons living in rural and remote areas in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan. We describe the clinic structure, processes and clinical assessment, as well as the evaluation research design and instruments. Finally, we report the demographic characteristics and geographic distribution of individuals referred during the first three years.