An evaluation of an occupational therapy service for persons with dementia
SUMMARY Four pilot research projects were undertaken to evaluate the effectiveness of the occupational therapy service to demen ted people in our care facility. The interventions used in the research included activity sessions, dressing retraining, reality-orientation classroom sessions versus staff-attention sessions and horne visiting. Although it was not possible to effectively separate the contribution of the occupational therapy service from the care and support simultaneously offerred by other professionals and relatives, the majority of the demented people maintained or improved, though not significantly, their level of functioning with occupational therapy intervention in the first three studies. The home-visiting pilot study indicated that relatives had different priorities than previously assumed. These results were the impetus for restructuring aspects of the occupational therapy services provided for persons with dementia and their families.