Coaching in self-efficacy improves care responses, health and well-being in dementia carers: a pre/post-test/follow-up study

Publication Type:
Journal Article
BMC Health Services Research, 2016, 16 (1)
Issue Date:
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© 2016 Chenoweth et al. Background: Maintaining the health and well-being of family carers of people with dementia is vital, given their potential for experiencing burden associated with the role. The study aimed to help dementia carers develop self-efficacy, be less hassled by the caring role and improve their health and well-being with goal-directed behaviour, by participating in an eight module carer coaching program. Methods: The study used mixed methods in a pre/post-test/follow-up design over 24 months, with assignment of consented dementia carers to either individualised (n = 16) or group coaching (n = 32), or usual carer support services (n = 43), depending on preference. Care-giving self-efficacy and hassles, carer health, well-being and goal-directed behaviours were assessed over time. Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) was used to compare changes over time and the effects of coaching on carer self-efficacy, hassles and health, using the Univariate General Linear Model (GLM). Results: All carers were hassled by many aspects of caring at baseline. Participants receiving coaching reported non-significant improvements in most areas of self-efficacy for caring, hassles associated with caring and self-reported health at post-test and follow-up, than did carers receiving usual carer support. Group coaching had greater success in helping carers to achieve their goals and to seek help from informal and formal support networks and services. Conclusion: The study outcomes were generally positive, but need to be interpreted cautiously, given some methodological limitations. It has been shown, however, that health staff can assist dementia carers to develop self-efficacy in better managing their family member's limitations and behaviour, seek help from others and attend to their health. Teaching carers to use goal-directed behaviour may help them achieve these outcomes.
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