Innovative Program Improving Lives of Seniors with Dementia in Newfoundland and Labrador

  • Health and Community Services

November 13, 2019

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador and the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement (CFHI) today released the results of a successful collaboration to appropriately reduce the use of antipsychotic medication among people with dementia living in long-term homes.

With funding from the province and CFHI, the project first started in January 2018 and involved 39 long-term care homes in Newfoundland and Labrador. Fifty-two per cent of participating residents prescribed antipsychotics had their medications safely reduced or discontinued. This has improved their care experiences and lives, while also reducing the risk of negative health outcomes.

The project uses a person-centred approach to care that engages people living with dementia, their families, and staff. It involves the appropriate use of antipsychotic medication and creating individualized care plans. The approach also provides an opportunity to create supportive environments that help a person feel calm, safe, and comfortable.

Newfoundland and Labrador now has the opportunity to join the Momentum Challenge, an invitation-only CFHI program that will help the province expand its reach in this area. Funding has allowed Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, and Quebec to support more than 300 teams, provide more person-centred dementia care and reduce potentially inappropriate antipsychotic use.

“Thank you to the families and staff of our long-term care homes for their participation in the Appropriate Use of Antipsychotics Collaborative. Their commitment, and the support from the foundation, have resulted in improvements in care and quality of life for people residing in long-term care. While this project has concluded, our commitment to improving outcomes in this area will continue.”
Honourable John Haggie
Minister of Health and Community Services

“We’re delighted to celebrate the leadership of Newfoundland and Labrador in improving care for people living with dementia. Their efforts will help to accelerate national declines in potentially inappropriate antipsychotic use. In 2013-14, about one in three long-term care residents who did not have a psychosis diagnosis were prescribed an antipsychotic. By 2017-18, that number had dropped to one in five.”
Jennifer Zelmer
President and CEO, Canadian Foundation of Health Care Improvement

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Learn more
Project Backgrounder

Patient Story

Provincial Government Partners with Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement on Dementia Care

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Media contacts
Kathy Dicks Peyton
Health and Community Services
709-729-6986, 699-1982

Graeme Wilkes
Canadian Foundation for Health Care Improvement

2019 11 13 4:55 pm