Acute hospital care

Research projects

The Association for Dementia Studies has been involved in a number of research projects relating to acute hospitals, including:

Excellent Care in a Dementia Friendly Acute Hospital - South Central 

HSCP_Logo_FULLADS has delivered a development programme for leadership and expertise in dementia within seven Acute Trust organizations on behalf of NHS South of England (Central) in partnership with the Health and Social Care Partnership. The aim of the programme was to develop expertise and leadership within the Acute settings via Dementia Champions, and a sustainable area-wide Dementia Champion’s network.   

RCN Dementia development programme

Independent Evaluation of the RCN Transforming Dementia Care in Hospitals Programme.

In May 2014 the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) published the results of a major year-long programme which has seen nine NHS trusts develop innovative ways to improve dementia care in hospitals.

The programme, which was funded by the RCN Foundation, was launched at the Transforming Dementia Care in Hospital conference and included a number of examples of strategies such as trust-wide education programmes, improving individualised care and supporting family carers.

The Association for Dementia Studies carried out an independent evaluation of the programme and showed that commitment and leadership from trust boards, as well as investing in dedicated dementia nurse specialists, was integral to achieving improvements in dementia care.

The programme was found to help clinical leads achieve some very positive outcomes for patients and improve engagement with family carers over a relatively short period of time.

Dr Peter Carter, Chief Executive & General Secretary of the RCN, said: “High quality care for people with dementia will require dedicated time and resources, as well as strong leadership from trust boards. With more than 900,000 people with dementia attending NHS hospitals every year, this is not an issue which can be ignored. Without dedicated time and resource to network, share learning and evaluate practice, high quality care for people with dementia will be difficult to deliver across the NHS.”

Read the summary document here 


Excellent care in a Dementia friendly acute hospital

New Cross Hospital, Wolverhampton

Delivering Excellence in Dementia Care in the Acute Hospital was a project dedicated to improving acute hospital admissions for older patients with dementia. The Association for Dementia Studies worked in partnership with the Royal Wolverhampton Hospital at the intervention and evaluation level. Click the video above for more information.


Professor Dawn Brooker has a long-standing research interest in the quality of care for people with dementia in acute hospitals and is currently on the steering group for a number of national research programmes in this area. She worked with Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals as an expert advisor to help them to implement person-centred care interventions in the shape of a care bundle. The aim was to ensure that patients with dementia receive care which demonstrates best clinical practice, is cost effective and provides individuals with respect, dignity and compassion. This was achieved through the development, implementation and evaluation of a set of evidence-based interventions for use by all staff.


NHS West Midlands funded the Institute of Health and Society to evaluate the development of Excellent Care for People with Dementia in Acute Hospital Care Environments. An evaluation of the impact of these interventions was led by Professor Dominic Upton.

The evaluation aimed to capture the quality of dementia care delivered in the hospital and the cost-benefit of the new service. The NHS organisational culture, the environment of the patient with dementia and the impact of specialist dementia training for acute care ward staff were evaluated. The impact on the key stakeholders such as patients with dementia, their carers, staff supporting the patients and linked services like liaison psychiatry were the focus of this multi-level evaluation. The evaluation work was supported by a team from the Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals and the input of an expert steering group.

ABMU training evaluation 

We have been commissioned by the Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University (ABMU) Health Board in Wales to evaluate their Dementia Training Programme.

This work will adopt mixed research methods to explore: 

  • the impact of training on practice, from both a staff and a patient/carer perspective;
  • transfer of knowledge achieved through this training identifying different levels of staff; 
  • the support mechanisms in place to enable the embedding of the theory from the training into practice whilst acknowledging any potential barriers; 
  • the impact of the training in relation to the Butterfly Scheme which is currently identified as hospital practice 

Evaluation report

The evaluation report was completed towards in 2016 and provided a detailed analysis of the current training programme, along with recommendations for any relevant changes. 

project summary is currently available.

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