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Aging Ment Health. 2005 Jan;9(1):25-34.

Understanding the outcomes of a psycho-educational group intervention for caregivers of persons with dementia living at home: a process evaluation.

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Direction de santé publique de Montréal-Centre, Québec, Canada.


This qualitative process evaluation study aimed to identify the primary processes of a psycho-educational group for caregivers of persons with dementia, in order to better understand intervention outcomes. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 30 participants recruited from the experimental group of a randomised controlled trial. At pre-test, participants reported their expectations of the group. At post-test, they described their group experience, the most/least helpful aspects of the intervention, their most useful learning and their responses during a recent episode of disturbing behaviour by their relative. Results showed that the group delivered both educational and support processes. Support processes complemented educational processes. Participants learned coping strategies, with reframing playing a more important role than problem-solving or seeking social support. Daughters benefited more than spouses from educational processes. This study of group processes contributes to our understanding of the reported reduction in frequency of disturbing behaviours and of the change in caregivers' behaviours.

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