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Clinical practice guidelines and principles of care for people with dementia in Australia

Dementia Guidelines

In February 2016, the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) approved the Clinical practice guidelines and principles of care for people with dementia: Recommendations


You can read or download the Guidelines here


Currently there are more than 353,800 Australians with dementia1 and this figure is expected to increase to almost 900,000 by 2050.


More than 1.2 million Australians are involved in their care and the cost of dementia on the health and aged care systems in calculated to be at least $4.9 billion per annum.


National clinical guidelines for people with dementia will provide health professionals and carers in primary care, aged care and hospital settings with access to recommendations reflecting current evidence on dementia care to better respond to the needs and preferences of the person living with dementia.


These guidelines contain 109 recommendations that health and aged care staff should apply in their workplaces while also responding to the needs and preferences of the person with dementia and their carer(s) and family.


Of these recommendations, 29 are evidence-based recommendations, seven are classified as consensus-based recommendations and 73 are practice points.

'Living with dementia: How the environment, technology and you can help'

This website was part of a suite of resources funded by the Department of Health and Ageing under the Australian Government Dementia Initiative. The page links to information about how changes to the environment and use of assistive technology may support the independence, safety and leisure of people living with dementia.

Observing and talking about pain behaviours

An online workshop for family members of persons with Alzheimer's disease and other dementias.' University of Alberta. This online workshop includes an online presentation about pain and dementia, additional materials to give more detail about the topics covered in the presentation, and a toolkit for organisations who would like to conduct on a workshop with these materials. Resources are free, but users must register.

The Brain: Teaching Modules Colorado State University. 1997. Annenberg Learner

These video resources for college and high school and adult learners offer footage and research into the inner workings of the brain and include findings on Alzheimer's disease, schizophrenia, autism and Parkinson's disease. Includes 32 video modules (from 5 to 20 minutes in length) and guide.

CareSearch 'palliative care knowledge network'

The CareSearch palliative care knowledge network is an online resource designed to help those needing relevant and trustworthy information and resources about palliative care. Some sections are designed specifically for health professionals and others for patients, carers, and family and friends. While the website contains varied resources on palliative care, this page contains links to aged care and dementia information, reports and resources.


Dementia-A Resource for Health Professionals. Veterans Affairs Canada

A paper describing how Veterans Affairs Canada developed an evidence-based resource intended to assist family physicians and other primary care health professionals looking after veterans with dementia. The document is a resource for health professionals and contains case studies and analyses.


Dementia. Supporting people with dementia and their carers in health and social care, UK

National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence, 2006. This 56-page document describes the National Institute of Clinical Excellence guidelines for supporting people with dementia and their carers.

Nursing Standard of Practice Protocol: Recognition and Management of Dementia

DEMENTIA Fletcher, K. 2008, Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing is the geriatric clinical nursing website of the Hartford Institute for Geriatric Nursing, New York University College of Nursing. is an evidence-based online resource for nurses in clinical and educational settings. This online article is aimed at nurses and gives information on dementia: background, parameters of assessment, nursing care strategies, evaluation, follow-up, and practice guidelines.

Developing Meaningful Connections with People with Dementia

A Training Manual. Spencer, B., Robinson, A., and Curtin C. (Eds.). A 330-page training manual that provides a foundation for training in dementia care and addresses all seven competencies outlined in the Michigan Dementia Coalition's Knowledge and Skills Needed for Dementia Care: A Guide for Direct Care Workers.

Guidelines for the Evaluation of Dementia and Age-Related Cognitive Decline 2011

American Psychological Association Task Force Update. These guidelines conform to the American Psychological Association's Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct (APA, 2002) and were developed for psychologists who perform evaluations of dementia and age-related cognitive change.

Assessment of Older Adults with Diminished Capacity

A Handbook for Psychologists. American Bar Association Commission on Law and Aging - American Psychological Association, 2008. This publication is a collaborative effort between members of the American Bar Association (ABA) Commission on Law and Aging and the American Psychological Association (APA) and is aimed at psychologists evaluating civil capacities of older adults.

The authors review psychological assessment of six civil capacities of particular importance to older adults: medical consent capacity, sexual consent capacity, financial capacity, testamentary capacity, capacity to drive, and capacity to live independently. The handbook addresses the important topic of undue influence and introduces emerging areas of interest, such as the capacity to mediate, the capacity to participate in research, and the capacity to vote.

Caregiving Strategies for Older Adults with Delirium, Dementia and Depression

Registered Nurses Association of Ontario, 2004. Registered Nurses Association of Ontario, Toronto, Canada. This 220-page nursing best practice guideline is intended as a resource tool for nurses, healthcare professionals and administrators who are leading practice change.

The authors say that the document is useful for those developing policies, procedures, protocols, educational programs, and assessment and documentation tools. Nurses providing direct client care will benefit from reviewing the recommendations, the evidence in support of the recommendations and the process that was used to develop the guidelines. The authors recommend that practice settings adapt these guidelines and suggest suitable formats.

End Stage Dementia Care

Palliative Care Dementia Resources. Polisher Research Institute. This web page provides links to articles that summarise characteristics, issues and palliative care during the terminal phase of advanced dementia

Working Cross Culturally: A Guide

This Guide is the result of a co-operative endeavour of the Multicultural Communities Council of South Australia and Multicultural Aged Care Inc, and inlcudes Cultural Background Information on 21 different CALD Communities.


National Cross Cultural Dementia Network

The Network provides Alzheimer's Australia (AA) with a pool of knowledge and expertise that is of benefit for all Australians living with dementia. The Network acts as a platform for AA, the Commonwealth and other relevant government services, and non government organisations by providing professional, expert and strategic advice across a broad range of issues relating to people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds (CALD) who live with dementia.