Aim: To determine whether giving dementia caregivers active psychoeducational intervention is more efficacious than passive intervention for improving their caregiving skills and reducing their caregiving burden. Methods: This study was a prospective, single-blinded, controlled trial with 43 caregiver/person-with-dementia dyads. The dyads were randomly assigned to the active psychoeducational intervention (AP) group, which used role-play, discussion, and development of problem-solving capacity to build up their caregiving skills and competence, or the passive psychoeducational intervention (PP) group, which gave caregivers educational materials on common caregiving strategies. Primary outcomes were the levels of caregiver competence (Care Skill Inventory [CSI]), burden (Chinese Zarit Burden Inventory [CZBI]), and distress caused by the behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (Neuropsychiatric Inventory-Questionnaire [NPI-Q]). Outcomes were assessed pre-test, post-test and after 3 months. Repeated measures one-way analysis of variance was used to compare mean-change scores between time-points, and generalized estimating equations (GEE) were used to compare groups. Results: Post-test or 3-month (or both) Care Skill Inventory, Chinese Zarit Burden Inventory and Neuropsychiatric Inventory-Questionnaire distress levels were significantly (p < 0.05) better in the AP but not in the PP group. The generalized estimating equation intergroup comparison, adjusted for potential confounders, showed that Care Skill Inventory in the AP group was more significantly improved than in the PP group, and that Chinese Zarit Burden Inventory nearly reached significance. Conclusions: Active rather than passive psychoeducation, even in a short (3 months) intervention of six visits, was more efficacious for improving caregiving competence. Future studies will require larger samples. Geriatr Gerontol Int 2018; 18: 750–757.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Health(social science)
- Geriatrics and Gerontology