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Effectiveness of online cognitive behavioral therapy on family caregivers of people with dementia

Authors Kwok TC, Au A, Wong B, Ip I, Mak V, Ho F

Received 21 October 2013

Accepted for publication 6 January 2014

Published 11 April 2014 Volume 2014:9 Pages 631—636


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Timothy Kwok,1,2 Alma Au,3 Bel Wong,1 Isaac Ip,1 Vivian Mak,1 Florence Ho1

1Jockey Club Centre for Positive Ageing, 2Department of Medicine and Therapeutics, Chinese University of Hong Kong; 3Department of Applied Social Sciences, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong

Purpose: Family caregivers of persons with dementia (PWD) may receive caregiver training because of logistical constraints and privacy concerns. This study evaluated the effectiveness of an online intervention for family caregivers of PWD in improving their self-efficacy in managing behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD), and their emotion well-being.
Subjects and methods: A total of 36 family caregivers of people with dementia participated in a 9-week online intervention based on the cognitive behavioral therapy model. Outcomes of the intervention were measured by the Chinese version of the Neuropsychiatric Inventory Questionnaire and two domains of the Revised Scale for Caregiving Self-Efficacy. Wilcoxon signed rank tests were used to compare the change in outcome variables.
Results: The severity of BPSD of PWD and BPSD-related distress in family caregivers showed a statistically significant reduction after the intervention. Subgroup analysis showed self-efficacy in controlling upsetting thoughts significantly improved in caregivers of PWD at moderate to severe stages.
Conclusion: Online cognitive behavioral therapy for family caregivers reduced BPSD of PWD and the related distress in their caregivers.

Keywords: online intervention, dementia caregiver, emotional self-efficacy, BPSD

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