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Alzheimer's & dementia : the journal of the Alzheimer's Association ; 17(Suppl 7), 2021.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1790663

ABSTRACT

Background Older adults are at greater risk for morbidity and mortality associated with COVID‐19. Spatial distancing and sequestering practices are recommended to limit viral exposure. Older adults adopting these practices are at increased risk of social isolation and adverse health outcomes. Remote technologies offer various platforms for satisfying socialization and healthcare needs while sequestering. Understanding how older adults are using technology has implications for wellbeing during a pandemic. Method Researchers attempted to contact all participants enrolled in the University of Kentucky Alzheimer's Disease Research Center longitudinal study via telephone to survey technology use (n = 706). Participants were contacted directly, except for demented participants, whose primary caregivers were contacted to respond on their behalf, when possible. Participants and caregivers gave their assent verbally to complete the voluntary survey, the procedures of which were approved by the IRB. The surveys consisted of validated instruments to gauge the extent of use of and comfort with technology. Spearman correlations, chi‐square tests, and t‐tests were used to explore data. Result Ultimately, 384 participants were reached and 332 consented to participate. Most reported reliable home internet access (91.5%) and some internet use (90.6%). Recent feelings of loneliness were not related to any technology‐related variables (all ps > 0.29) other than decreasing with greater willingness to use telehealth (Rho = ‐0.11, p = 0.06). Those who reported a lack of comfort with technology (n = 76) were less likely to text messaging (67% vs 78%) and social media (56% vs 69%), ps ≤ 0.06, but felt socially connected using technology at similar levels (82% vs 75%), p = 0.22. Nearly 70% of this group reported they would use technology more with training. Across all participants, willingness to use telehealth was not related to frequency of frustration with tech (Rho = 0, p = 0.99). Conclusion The results suggest that some older adults’ use of technology is limited by familiarity. Lack of familiarity does not appear to create a barrier to using telehealth nor does frustration with technology appear to limit telehealth use. The findings have implications for supporting older adults sequestered during a pandemic but potentially more broadly.

2.
Alzheimers Dement ; 17 Suppl 7: e054696, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1680255

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Older adults are at greater risk for morbidity and mortality associated with COVID-19. Spatial distancing and sequestering practices are recommended to limit viral exposure. Older adults adopting these practices are at increased risk of social isolation and adverse health outcomes. Remote technologies offer various platforms for satisfying socialization and healthcare needs while sequestering. Understanding how older adults are using technology has implications for wellbeing during a pandemic. METHOD: Researchers attempted to contact all participants enrolled in the University of Kentucky Alzheimer's Disease Research Center longitudinal study via telephone to survey technology use (n = 706). Participants were contacted directly, except for demented participants, whose primary caregivers were contacted to respond on their behalf, when possible. Participants and caregivers gave their assent verbally to complete the voluntary survey, the procedures of which were approved by the IRB. The surveys consisted of validated instruments to gauge the extent of use of and comfort with technology. Spearman correlations, chi-square tests, and t-tests were used to explore data. RESULT: Ultimately, 384 participants were reached and 332 consented to participate. Most reported reliable home internet access (91.5%) and some internet use (90.6%). Recent feelings of loneliness were not related to any technology-related variables (all ps > 0.29) other than decreasing with greater willingness to use telehealth (Rho = -0.11, p = 0.06). Those who reported a lack of comfort with technology (n = 76) were less likely to text messaging (67% vs 78%) and social media (56% vs 69%), ps ≤ 0.06, but felt socially connected using technology at similar levels (82% vs 75%), p = 0.22. Nearly 70% of this group reported they would use technology more with training. Across all participants, willingness to use telehealth was not related to frequency of frustration with tech (Rho = 0, p = 0.99). CONCLUSION: The results suggest that some older adults' use of technology is limited by familiarity. Lack of familiarity does not appear to create a barrier to using telehealth nor does frustration with technology appear to limit telehealth use. The findings have implications for supporting older adults sequestered during a pandemic but potentially more broadly.

4.
Aging Clin Exp Res ; 32(10): 2169-2172, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-763944
5.
Alzheimers Dement (N Y) ; 6(1): e12045, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-691725

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) has dramatically altered everyday life, including the field of Alzheimer's disease (AD) research. This perspective article explores some of the ways in which COVID-19 has already impacted the field, anticipates some of the long-lasting effects, and explores strategies for addressing current and future needs. Areas of impact include study integrity, regulatory and industry issues, and participant engagement. Proposed strategies for addressing these challenges include analytic methods to deal with large degrees of missing data and development of patient-centered, user-friendly, remote data collection tools and assessments. We also highlight the importance of maintaining participant well-being as a first and constant priority.

6.
J Alzheimers Dis ; 76(1): 27-31, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-637281

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic led to an abrupt halt of many Alzheimer's disease (AD) research studies at sites spanning the world. This is especially true for studies requiring in-person contact, such as studies collecting biofluids. Since COVID-19 is likely to remain a threat for an extended period, the resumption of fluid biomarker studies requires the development and implementation of procedures that minimize the risk of in-person visits to participants, staff, and individuals handling the biofluid samples. Some issues to consider include structuring the visit workflow to minimize contacts and promote social distancing; screening and/or testing participants and staff for COVID-19; wearing masks and performing hand hygiene; and precautions for handling, storing, and analyzing biofluids. AD fluid biomarker research remains a vitally important public health priority and resuming studies requires appropriate safety procedures to protect research participants and staff.


Subject(s)
Alzheimer Disease/metabolism , Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/metabolism , Health Personnel/trends , Patient Safety , Personal Protective Equipment , Pneumonia, Viral/metabolism , Alzheimer Disease/diagnosis , Biomarkers/metabolism , Body Fluids/metabolism , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Humans , Pandemics , Personal Protective Equipment/trends , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , SARS-CoV-2
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