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Invited Commentary
September 30, 2019

A Telephone-Based Dementia Care Management Intervention—Finding the Time to Listen

Author Affiliations
  • 1University of Massachusetts Medical School, Worcester, Massachusetts
JAMA Intern Med. 2019;179(12):1667-1668. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.4111

In this issue of JAMA Internal Medicine, Possin and colleagues1 report the results of their trial testing a telephone- and internet-based supportive care management program, the Care Ecosystem, for patients with dementia and their caregivers. In this model, care is delivered by unlicensed Care Team Navigators (CTNs) who are trained and supervised by a dementia specialist nurse, social worker, and pharmacist. Results of the trial indicate that the program improved patient quality of life, decreased caregiver depression and burden, and reduced emergency department visits. These results are especially impressive given the robust control intervention that provided access to existing, high-quality resources from the Family Caregiver Alliance, Alzheimer Association, and Area Agencies on Aging. These trial results offer hope to the estimated 16 million caregivers of patients living with dementia in the United States,2 many of whom have inadequate dementia care support.3

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