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May 8, 2021

New approaches to dementia in rural areas

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The proportion of Australians aged 60 and over is rising, and there is a projected tripling of those with dementia by 2050. It is commonly known that dementia is characterised by impaired memory but less well known is the fact that those with dementia are acutely sensitive to the social and built environment. Therefore, not surprisingly, dementia patients find hospitals, with their many strangers, bleeping electronic noises and moveable equipment, disturbing.

In the latest issue of the Australian Journal of Rural Health, Kasia Bail and others explore this topic in relation to the increased challenges posed by dementia patients in rural areas. Being diagnosed with dementia often leads to increasing length of hospital stay for older people, with adverse experiences and increased mortality, particularly for those in remote areas.

The researchers found that non-traditional methods of service delivery such as telehealth and the use of nurse practitioners are increasingly being used for those with dementia in rural and remote areas.

The August issue of AJRH also includes two reports on the physical and mental health of young people: ‘Health outcomes of eating disorder clients in a rural setting’ by Tierney Sheridan and others and ‘Perceptions of body satisfaction and desired weight loss among Tasmanian adolescents’ by Clarissa J Hughes.

Learn more about AJRH at www.ruralhealth.org.au/ajrh and access AJRH contents at onlinelibrary.wiley.com/journal/10.1111/(ISSN)1440-1584


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