£2.4 Million Grant to Improve Dementia Care in Care Homes

Dementia care

Researchers from the University of Leeds (alongside a collaborative group of researchers from the NHS and other academic institutions), have received £2.4 million of funding from the National Institute for Health Research Health Technology Assessment (NIHR HTA) Programme to conduct a four year national trial to evaluate whether a technique improves the quality of care for people with dementia in care homes. 

Amanda Farrin, Professor of Clinical Trials & Evaluation of Complex Interventions at the CTRU said, ‘‘We are looking forward to collaborating with the Bradford Dementia Group in this nationally important research area.  It will be a challenge to co-ordinate such a complex project, but the CTRU are well placed to do so, given our experience of successfully implementing large and complex UK trials in other vulnerable populations’’.

The research, led by Dr Claire Surr (Bradford Dementia Group, University of Bradford), is a large scale collaboration between leading academics at the Universities of Bradford, Leeds, Newcastle, the University of Technology Sydney, as well as including experts from Oxfordshire Health NHS Foundation Trust, Bradford District Care Trust, Bupa and the Alzheimer’s Society. The University of Leeds research team comprises Professor Amanda Farrin, Mrs Kayleigh Burton, Ms Liz Graham and Dr Rebecca Walwyn from the Clinical Trials Research Unit (Leeds Institute of Clinical Trials Research) and Mr David Meads, Dr Najma Siddiqi from Leeds Institute of Health Sciences. The Clinical Trials Research Unit within LICTR will co-ordinate the project on a day to day basis. 

The study, known as DCM-EPIC, will involve 750 people with dementia and care staff in 50 care homes across the North of England, London and Oxfordshire. The aim is to investigate whether Dementia Care Mapping™ (DCM), a technique developed at the University of Bradford, is effective in helping care home staff to deliver better quality care to people with dementia. 

Dr Claire Surr, Reader in Dementia Studies at the University of Bradford, said: “We are delighted to be supported by the NIHR HTA programme to undertake this research. This study will provide us with strong evidence about how we can ensure people living with dementia get better quality care in care homes. Care home staff need to know the best available approaches to support people living with dementia. This research will tell us if the Dementia Care Mapping™ tool is an effective way to equip staff with the skills they need to deliver good quality care for residents.”