Research

There are multiple opportunities for families, persons with memory loss/other chronic conditions, and care professionals to participate in research projects that seek to design and evaluate innovative programs.

Summary of Current Projects

*Indicates projects or studies where you can get involved.
†Indicates projects or studies directed by the Families and LTC Projects.

University of Minnesota Caregiver Registry*†
Becoming part of the registry provides the Families and Long-Term Care Projects permission to contact you in the future about any upcoming opportunities to participate in our research as well other basic information. It does not enroll you in any study.

Sign up online:
Family Members
Professionals

CarFreeMe †
The loss of one’s ability to drive during Alzheimer’s disease and Alzheimer’s related dementias (AD/ADRD) may adversely influence sense of identity as well as independence. This project will feature an international collaboration between the University of Minnesota and the University of Queensland to tailor and examine the feasibility of a novel adaption of CarFreeMe, a seven-module support program to help families and their cognitively impaired relatives navigate the driving cessation transition in joint fashion.

Residential Care Transition Module (RCTM)
For family members who have admitted a relative with memory impairment to residential long-term care (assisted living, memory care, skilled nursing, etc.) The RCTM is six formal sessions of consultation over a 4-month period. This study will assess how the intervention affects various caregiver outcomes over a 12-month period.

Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program (GWEP)*
Goals of this collaborative are to educate and train Minnesota’s primary care and geriatrics workforce to care for older adults in integrated models and to partner with community-based organizations across the state to address gaps in the care of older adults. Current initiatives for the Families and Long-Term Care Projects team are state outreach by Dr. Gaugler through presentations in each of the 87 counties in Minnesota and offering resources and referrals to attendees following these presentations.

Adult Day Service Plus Program (ADS Plus) †
This study will evaluate the effectiveness, cost benefit, and implementation potential of a caregiver support program within adult day services for older adults. Over 50 adult day programs across the US and 200 or more family caregivers and older adult clients living with dementia will be enrolled in this study.

African Immigrant Memory Loss Project †
The goal of this project is to fill the gap in knowledge of dementia prevalence, care needs, and resources among African immigrants in Minnesota. A community-engaged assessment will be conducted, based on our partnership with the African Career, Education, and Resources, Inc. (ACER) and guided by a project advisory board.

Care to Plan †
This study will conduct a preliminary evaluation of Care to Plan, which is an online care planning tool that provides a succinct and clear overview of various types of dementia caregiver interventions, assessments of risk, and individualized recommendations for dementia caregivers, as well as resources that link users to a selected recommendation

The Porchlight Project †
This project is a collaboration with Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota to evaluate an adaptation of the volunteer Senior Companion Program (SCP) to assist families to better manage memory impairment at home, identify and facilitate the use of long-term services and supports, and improve engagement with primary care providers throughout the state of Minnesota. This study will potentially offer an efficient, wide-ranging service model for states and communities to implement.

The NIA IMPACT Collaboratory
The National Institute on Aging (NIA) Imbedded Pragmatic AD/ADRD Clinical Trials (IMPACT) Collaboratory works to build the nation’s capacity to conduct pragmatic clinical trials of interventions embedded within health care systems for people living with dementia and their caregivers. The goals of the IMPACT Collaboratory are to:

  • Develop and disseminate best practice research methods;
  • Support design and conduct of pragmatic trials, including pilot studies;
  • Build investigator capacity through training and knowledge generation;
  • Catalyze collaboration among stakeholders, healthcare providers, and investigators; and
  • Ensure the research includes culturally-tailored interventions and people from diverse and under-represented backgrounds.

A Mobile Informatics Solution to Aid in Memory
The objective of this Small Business Innovation Research Award is to develop, test, and evaluate a Smartwatch Reminder (SR) System for persons with memory concerns (PWMC) and their care partners.

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