City Research Online

Home and Alone with Dementia

Evans, D., Price, K. & Meyer, J. (2016). Home and Alone with Dementia. SAGE Open, 6(3), doi: 10.1177/2158244016664954


The aim of this qualitative exploratory study was to investigate community care clinicians’ perceptions of the challenges faced by people who have dementia and live alone at home. Data were collected through interviews and focus groups with 21 community health and social care clinicians who supported people with dementia in the community. The perceived challenges that were identified related to poor hygiene, inadequate nutrition, keeping safe, other health problems, managing money, coping with technology, and lack of support. Although the findings only represent the perspective of clinicians and so tend to focus on clinical issues, they nonetheless resonate with previous research demonstrating that the issues have persisted for at least two decades. There are a number of implications arising from these perceptions related to a person with dementia’s potential capacity to care for their health, interact safely with other people, and live at home alone. As the severity of cognitive impairment increases, their ability to care for their health and well-being will be compromised. This highlights the importance of community care clinicians being engaged in the early detection of this population and the establishment of supportive routines. These issues will likely to be of international interest, as many countries are facing the challenge of providing community-based care for an increasing number of older people with dementia. However, providing this type of dementia care for people who live alone has received little attention in the literature, and problems remain with meeting the practical challenges faced by this vulnerable population

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License ( which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access page (
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Nursing
Text - Draft Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution 3.0.

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