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Creating a meaningful everyday life: Perceptions of relatives of people with dementia and healthcare professionals in the context of a Danish dementia village [2018]

Background
The world’s aging population contributes to an increase in people living with dementia, which is perceived as one of the main causes of disability and dependency for older people. The first dementia village in Denmark was established in 2015, with the intention of providing a safe and meaningful everyday life for people with dementia. The purpose of the study was to explore the way in which relatives of people with dementia and healthcare professionals create and maintain a meaningful everyday life for the residents in a Danish dementia village.

Methods
A methodology for user involvement in public service development and evaluation called ‘The BIKVA methodology’ was used followed by a thematic analysis. A purposive sample of 32 participants took part in the study.

Results
The analysis revealed one main theme, ‘Enabling a familiar and meaningful everyday life in the dementia village’, with three corresponding subthemes, reflecting the way in which relatives of people with dementia and healthcare professionals create and maintain a meaningful everyday life for the residents in a Danish dementia village.

Conclusion
The findings showed that relatives of people with dementia and healthcare professionals were committed to creating and maintaining a meaningful everyday life for the residents, but also revealed different understandings of when, where, and how this could be understood and best be achieved. Furthermore, people with advanced dementia may not be able to benefit from the activities and possibilities provided by the dementia village, since this required resources beyond what could be provided.

Hanne Peoples, Line Friis Pedersen, Lene Moestrup
Dementia, December 24, 2018
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