2010

Aim. To outline the importance of understanding quality of life (QOL) in people with dementia living in long-term care. To consider several key research questions and some of the challenges and impact of neglecting knowledge transfer. Background. There is a gap between the knowledge in the broad dementia research literature and transfer of knowledge into practice. Quality of life research and transfer of research into practice is one means by which health professiols can inform health and social care policy and improve care practice. Discussion. There are a number of unswered research questions in relation to QOL in people with dementia living in long term care. A selection of questions discussed in this paper relate to the impact of staff knowledge of mental health assessment and the importance of therapeutic communication, cognitive training programs and social biography, individual needs, weight and behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD), resident choice and the impact of the environment on QOL. Conclusion. Research methods used to assess QOL must not be too restrictive and mixed methods and data from multiple perspectives should be encouraged so that an extensive understanding is uncovered. Potential strategies to assist knowledge transfer in long-term care settings are needed.