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Dementia (London) ; 20(8): 2779-2801, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1207590


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: The Covid-19 pandemic reduced access to social activities and routine health care that are central to dementia prevention. We developed a group-based, video-call, cognitive well-being intervention; and investigated its acceptability and feasibility; exploring through participants' accounts how the intervention was experienced and used in the pandemic context. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHOD: We recruited adults aged 60+ years with memory concerns (without dementia). Participants completed baseline assessments and qualitative interviews/focus groups before and after the 10-week intervention. Qualitative interview data and facilitator notes were integrated in a thematic analysis. RESULTS: 12/17 participants approached completed baseline assessments, attended 100/120 (83.3%) intervention sessions and met 140/170 (82.4%) of goals set. Most had not used video calling before. In the thematic analysis, our overarching theme was social connectedness. Three sub-themes were as follows: Retaining independence and social connectedness: social connectedness could not be at the expense of independence; Adapting social connectedness in the pandemic: participants strived to compensate for previous social connectedness as the pandemic reduced support networks; Managing social connections within and through the intervention: although there were tensions, for example, between sharing of achievements feeling supportive and competitive, participants engaged with various lifestyle changes; social connections supported group attendance and implementation of lifestyle changes. DISCUSSION AND IMPLICATIONS: Our intervention was acceptable and feasible to deliver by group video-call. We argue that dementia prevention is both an individual and societal concern. For more vulnerable populations, messages that lifestyle change can help memory should be communicated alongside supportive, relational approaches to enabling lifestyle changes.

COVID-19 , Dementia , Adult , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
Clin Med (Lond) ; 20(5): e160-e162, 2020 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-633832


Appropriate dissemination of information to the general public is a key component of the pandemic response. In 2018, recorded infection control advice messages were affixed to 30% of England's automated hospital switchboards during the seasonal influenza and norovirus outbreaks. As the majority of messages were mandatory for all callers, healthcare professionals using the hospital switchboard - including during time-critical emergencies - had their enquiries significantly delayed by these measures. Importantly, published analyses did not demonstrate an association between these messages and patient outcomes. As of May 2020, 85% of NHS trusts made use of infection control messages; on average, these delayed healthcare professionals by 59.4 seconds per call, but had no clear association with patient outcomes from COVID-19. An ongoing national switchboard quality improvement project seeks to establish a gold standard whereby healthcare professionals with urgent enquiries can press 'X' to skip past infection control messages and have their calls triaged immediately.

Communicable Disease Control/organization & administration , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Hospital Communication Systems/organization & administration , Infection Control/organization & administration , Information Dissemination/methods , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Female , Humans , Interdisciplinary Communication , Male , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Prevalence , Risk Assessment , Survival Analysis , United Kingdom