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J Clin Nurs. 2011 Jun;20(11-12):1776-83. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2702.2010.03633.x. Epub 2011 May 5.

Exploring nursing staff's attitudes and use of music for older people with dementia in long-term care facilities.

Author information

1
Department of Nursing, Tzu Chi College of Technology & Tzu Chi University, Hualien, Taiwan. sunghc@mail.tcu.edu.tw

Abstract

AIMS:

This study aimed to explore nursing staff's attitudes and use of music for older people with dementia in long-term care facilities.

BACKGROUND:

Music has shown positive outcomes in managing behavioural symptoms of older people with dementia. Older people living in long-term care facilities often do not have access to trained music therapists. Nursing staff provide the majority of direct care for institutionalised older people with dementia, therefore, will be the most appropriate personnel to learn and implement music therapy for those with dementia. To date, no studies have explored nursing staff's attitudes and use of music for those with dementia.

DESIGN:

A cross-sectional research design was used.

METHODS:

A convenience sample of 285 nursing staff caring for those with dementia in long-term care facilities in Taiwan were recruited. Participants received a self-administered questionnaire consisted of items exploring nursing staff's attitude and use of music for those with dementia. A total of 214 participants completed the questionnaires, giving a response rate of 75·1%.

RESULTS:

Most nursing staff held positive attitudes towards use of music for older people with dementia (mean=84·89, range 23-115), but only 30·6% (n=66) had used music for those with dementia in practice. The majority perceived that they had limited knowledge and skills about use of music (72·9%). Over half of the participants reported that they lacked resources and time to implement music therapy in practice.

CONCLUSIONS:

Nursing staff need more formal training to use music for those with dementia. Nursing staff can be the suitable personnel to learn easily and implement music therapy as a part of routine activity programmes for those with dementia.

RELEVANCE TO CLINICAL PRACTICE:

Appropriately trained nursing staff in long-term care facilities who use music therapy may help improve the mental health of older people with dementia.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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