Dementia Care Management Improved Quality of Life For Both Caregivers and Patients With Dementia Interview with:

Jochen René Thyrian, PhD German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) Greifswald, Germany     

Dr. Thyrian

Jochen René Thyrian, PhD
German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE)
Greifswald, Germany What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Dementia presents a challenge to the health care systems worldwide. People with dementia (PWD) need comprehensive medical, nursing, psychological and social support to delay the progression of disease and sustain autonomy and social inclusion. Evidence-based interventions alleviate the burden of disease for PwD and their caregivers, as no curative treatment is currently available. Involving caregivers is important because they provide the largest proportion of care for PwD. General physicians in residency have been identified as the first point of contact for PwD and is thus a promising setting for identification, comprehensive needs assessment and initiating dementia-specific treatment and care.

In this study we tested the effectiveness and safety of a model of collaborative care, Dementia Care Management (DCM) on patient-oriented outcomes in n=634 people screened positive for dementia in primary care. DCM is provided by specifically trained nurses, supported by a computerized intervention management system, in close cooperation with the treating physician at the people´s homes. Recommendations for improving treatment and care were based on a comprehensive needs assessment, discussed interprofessionally and their implementation monitored/ adjusted over the course of 6-12 months What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Response:  The main findings are, that providing Dementia Care Management significantly decreased behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia and caregiver burden after 1 year compared to care as usual. PwD had an increased chance of receiving antidementia drug treatment and DCM significantly increased quality of life for patients not living alone. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: Future research should focus on implementing Dementia Care Management, as tested here, to different health care systems. Furthermore, research should adapt it to different settings where people with dementia enter the health care system other than by general physicians in primary care. Other settings for example could be acute care hospitals. Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: I  thank the participants of our study and the professionals having been involved in it. The whole study would not have ben possible without the dedicated research team

And funding from the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) and the University Medicine of Greifswald at the University of Greifswald. For further information and publications feel free to contact me at

I do not have anything to disclose Thank you for your contribution to the community.


Thyrian JR, Hertel J, Wucherer D, Eichler T, Michalowsky B, Dreier-Wolfgramm A, Zwingmann I, Kilimann I, Teipel S, Hoffmann W. Effectiveness and Safety of Dementia Care Management in Primary CareA Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Psychiatry. Published online July 26, 2017. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2017.2124

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.