Education for relatives "Living with dementia"

Implementation and Evaluation of an Intervention Measure for Close Relatives of of People with Dementia in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania


A Dementia is a serious impact on the life we have been accustomed to. This applies, of course, to the people who are affected, but also to relatives and partners in the immediate living environment. These are suddenly faced with new and significant challenges. The training series "Living with dementia" provides information on the clinical picture of dementia, provides instructions on how to deal with the patient, answers legal and financial questions and provides advice on locally specific relief options. In addition, the sharing of personal insights, experiences and problems among the participants plays an important role. In this way, the relatives not only receive new and helpful knowledge, but also experience over several weeks that they are not alone with their problems and worries.

The DZNE Rostock/Greifswald investigates the burden and needs for support of caregiving relatives within the framework of accompanying scientific or participatory research. For this purpose, standardized questionnaires are issued at the beginning of the training series. In addition, participants are approached for participatory research or qualitative research methods such as semi-structured interviews on the trainings.

Background and aims

Due to demographic change and the resulting increase in average age, the number of people with dementia is increasing rapidly in the rurally dominated area of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. Characteristic for this federal state is a decreasing and already insufficient medical care. With the establishment of the regional association of the German Alzheimer Society in 2008 and the establishment of the Rostock/Greifswald site of the German Centre for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) in 2009, the aim was to establish a care structure for people with dementia and their relatives and to create relief opportunities. In order to achieve this goal and bundle competencies, the German Alzheimer Society and the DZNE Rostock/Greifswald have been cooperating with each other since 2011.

Within the scope of this cooperation, the partners jointly developed a series of training courses for relatives entitled "Living with dementia". By providing background knowledge about the disease and demonstrating possibilities for daily handling, positive effects are to be achieved in the care and thus contribute to the fact that people with dementia can stay longer in their homes.

Course of the study

The training programme is divided into eight modules, one of which contains the content of two hours. The training usually takes place eight times in weekly intervals.

Through specific information and counselling, an improvement in the care situation of people with dementia and their relatives is to be achieved. The aim of the two cooperation partners is to offer this training program in as many places in the country as possible. Qualified multipliers offering training on behalf of the Alzheimer's Society are being looked for. Since the start of the training series in 2011, more than 130 training courses have already taken place attended by over 1200 participants.

As part of the Geri-Coach training of the German Alzheimer Society, multipliers have been trained since 2021.

Principle Invetigator: Prof. Dr. Stefan Teipel
Start of the study: 2011
Status: ongoing

Cooperation partner
Deutsche Alzheimer Gesellschaft Mecklenburg-Vorpommern e. V. Selbsthilfe Demenz
Thorsten Sohn
Schwaaner Landstraße 10
18055 Rostock

Project management

Stefanie Köhler
+49 381 494-9618

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