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Research Grants - 2006


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Research Grants 2006


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2006 Grant - Piven

Developing a Measure of Emotional Care in Nursing Homes

Mary Lynn Piven, Ph.D.
University of North Carolina
Chapel Hill, North Carolina

2006 New Investigator Research Grant

Studies have shown that people with dementia want comfort, attachment, inclusion and identity-even though dementia symptoms may affect how these needs are expressed and how they can be met. Consequently, efforts have been made to provide people with dementia with physical, medical and emotional care.

Person-centered emotional care of nursing home residents with dementia refers to support, involvement, validation and physical contact-a broad spectrum of interactions that focus on individuals, their needs and abilities, and the meaning of their behaviors. This type of care is particularly relevant to the work of certified nursing assistants (CNAs), who provide 80 to 90 percent of direct care in nursing homes.

Unfortunately, there are few suitable research instruments that adequately define and measure emotional care and that could demonstrate the effective-ness of an emotional care intervention or the impact of emotional care provided by CNAs.

Mary Lynn Piven, Ph.D., and colleagues will use videotapes of morning care provided by CNAs to (1) develop and refine a reliable observational measure of emotional care and (2) conduct a preliminary validation of the measure by testing it against other established quality-of-life assessment tools.

This work may result in a reliable and valid measure of emotional care, facilitate examination of emotional care, and suggest possible interventions to improve care and quality of life for nursing home residents with dementia. This work could also influence recommendations governing CNA training.