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Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2015 Jul;30(7):702-9. doi: 10.1002/gps.4211. Epub 2014 Oct 22.

The Namaste Care programme can reduce behavioural symptoms in care home residents with advanced dementia.

Author information

Care Home Project Team, St Christopher's Hospice, London, UK.
South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK.
School of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Western Sydney, Sydney, Australia.
School of Ageing Studies, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida, USA.



The objective of the study was to evaluate the effects of the Namaste Care programme on the behavioural symptoms of residents with advanced dementia in care homes and their pain management.


Six dementia care homes collaborated in an action research study-one withdrew. Inclusion criteria were a dementia diagnosis and a Bedford Alzheimer's Nursing Severity Scale score of >16. Primary research measures were the Neuropsychiatric Inventory-Nursing Homes (NPI-NH) and Doloplus-2 behavioural pain assessment scale for the elderly. Measures were recorded at baseline and at three 1-2 monthly intervals after Namaste Care started.


Management disruption occurred across all care homes. The severity of behavioural symptoms, pain and occupational disruptiveness (NPI-NH) decreased in four care homes. Increased severity of behavioural symptoms in one care home was probably related to poor pain management, reflected in increased pain scores, and disrupted leadership. Comparison of NPI-NH scores showed that severity of behavioural symptoms and occupational disruptiveness were significantly lower after initiation of Namaste Care (n = 34, p < 0.001) and after the second interval (n = 32, p < 0.001 and p = 0.003). However, comparison of these measures in the second and third intervals revealed that both were slightly increased in the third interval (n = 24, p < 0.001 and p = 0.001).


Where there are strong leadership, adequate staffing, and good nursing and medical care, the Namaste Care programme can improve quality of life for people with advanced dementia in care homes by decreasing behavioural symptoms. Namaste is not a substitute for good clinical care.


Namaste Care; advanced dementia; behavioural symptoms of dementia; care homes; pain; quality of life

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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