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More than £500,000 to fund dementia research at Exeter

Posted on May 28th 2015

More than half a million pounds of new cutting-edge research which aims to advance us towards a dementia cure and improve dementia care has been awarded to the University of Exeter Medical School by Alzheimer’s Society.

In the UK alone, more than 850,000 people live with dementia, and the figure is expected to rise to more than 1 million by 2021 if no action is taken. Currently, dementia costs the UK economy £26.3 billion each year, on top of the emotional burden on families and carers.

Now, a series of awards from Alzheimer’s Society to health researchers will help us to better understand what goes wrong in the brains of people with dementia so we can begin to work towards a cure. The new research will also look at better ways for people living with dementia today.

Within PenCLAHRC, Dr Jo Thompson-Coon and Dr Iain Lang have been awarded £64,000 to conduct a review of dementia care. This systematic review will look at the dissemination and implementation of evidence-based practices in dementia care.

Dr Thompson-Coon said: “The way people with dementia are cared for is often at odds with what we know works best. Our aim in this project is to identify ways of ensuring that practice on the ground reflects our knowledge about how best to care for people with dementia.”

This review will be part of a large portfolio of research that PenCLAHRC is conducting in dementia and dementia care. Our Dementia Care Research Programme supports a number of research projects, including a range of reviews by the Evidence Synthesis Team on important aspects of dementia care, such as the effectiveness of mealtime interventions in residential care homes and the impact of outdoor spaces on the wellbeing of those with dementia.

This programme also supports a number of PhD studentships and was recently awarded funding from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Research Capacity in Dementia Care Programme (RCDCP) to support four PhDs exclusively for nurses and allied health professionals.

You can read more about the Dementia Care Research Programme here.

PenCLAHRC research was also heavily featured in a recent University of Exeter research feature, Seven Things You Didn’t Know About Dementia.

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