Algorithm, Other Tools for Addressing Dementia-Related Behaviors
May 24, 2013 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance
An article in the May 2013 Journal of Gerontological Nursing describes an algorithm (accessible with free registration) that has been developed to address challenging dementia-related behaviors. The algorithm and other problem-solving tools were created as part of a three-year study to reduce reliance on inappropriate use of antipsychotic medications to manage dementia-related behaviors and optimize their use when they are necessary. They are based on the findings of an Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality comparative effectiveness report, as well as studies and dementia care models described in the literature. The algorithm comprises three steps. The first is identifying and treating causal or contributing factors. Users begin by recording the frequency, duration, intensity, and characteristics of each behavior. Then, they identify and treat or eliminate antecedents to or triggers of the behavior.