Availability and Primary Health Care Orientation of Dementia-Related Services in Rural Saskatchewan, Canada
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Community-based services are important for improving outcomes for individuals with dementia and their caregivers. This study examined: (a) availability of rural dementia-related services in the Canadian province of Saskatchewan, and (b) orientation of services toward six key attributes of primary health care (i.e., information/education, accessibility, population orientation, coordinated care, comprehensiveness, quality of care). Data were collected from 71 rural Home Care Assessors via cross-sectional survey. Basic health services were available in most communities (e.g., pharmacists, family physicians, palliative care, adult day programs, home care, long-term care facilities). Dementia-specific services typically were unavailable (e.g., health promotion, counseling, caregiver support groups, transportation, week-end/night respite). Mean scores on the primary health care orientation scales were low (range 12.4 to 17.5/25). Specific services to address needs of rural individuals with dementia and their caregivers are limited in availability and fit with primary health care attributes.
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