Dementia Caregiver Education (Wettstein, Perren)

Dementia caregiver education

Principal Investigator (s): Albert Wettstein, Sonja Perren, and colleagues

Institutional Affiliation: Stadtärztlicher Dienst, Zürich, Switzerland

Description of Intervention:

1. Summary of Intervention

We did a randomized controlled intervention study of dementia-caregiver education in 128 dementia-caregiver dyads. (65 received 8 modules of 2h group education and 63 received a manual for memory training)

The group receiving caregiving education improved significally in well-being and quality of life of the caregivers, an effect not observed in the control group.

There was no group differences in rate of mortality, the placements in nursing homes, the behavioural disturbances of demented persons, the health care costs of patients or caregivers and the rate of progression of dementia. The study demonstrated that caregiver education programms are possible and effective in all sociodemographic groups, but are more used by members of the upper sociodemographic strata.

2. Intervention Materials

There are no English language description of the 8 modules of education, which are described in detail in a booklet published in German: Albert Wettstein, Markus Koenig, Regula Schmid, Sonja Perren: Belastung und Wohlbefinden bei Anhörigen von Menschen mit Demenz. Eine Interventionsstudie. Verlag Rüegger, Zürich, 2005, 155 Pages (S.p. 32-45 for description of trainig modules)

3. Implementing the Intervention

The training used can be provided by professional experts of dementia care (psychologists, nurses, social workers, physisions). It is now widely distributed in Switzerland by the Swiss Alzheimer Association (

4. For more information (English literature of the study):

Albert Wettstein, Regula Schmid, Markus König: who participates in psychosocal Interventions of patients with dementia? Dement geriatr Cogn Disord 2004; 18:80-86

Markus König, Albert Wettstein: Caring for relatives with dementias: Willingness-to-pay for a reduction in Caregivers Burden. Expert Rev. Pharmacoeconomics Outcomes Rs 2 (6), 535-547;2002