Research is currently ongoing to investigate the use of assistive technology by people with mild dementia to support independent living at home. The aim of this study was to describe professional caregivers’ perceptions on the prerequisites for and consequences of people with mild dementia using a digital photo diary to facilitate their talks about daily events with their family members. A questionnaire was sent out to 582 participants (response rate 70.1%) to elucidate the professional caregivers’ perceptions on the use of the digital photo diary. The questionnaire contained both quantitative and qualitative data and was analyzed with descriptive statistics, factor analysis, multivariate analysis of covariance and qualitative content analysis. This study reports the results related to prerequisites and consequences of using the photo diary. The results from the factor analysis revealed four factors: Trust, Vulnerability, Dependency/Independency and Control. The qualitative content analysis resulted in five categories: Immediate implementation after receiving a diagnose is required, Relatives’ participation is a necessity, Strengthened self-esteem and meaningful everyday life, Increased alienation and a feeling of isolation and Assistive digital devices provide opportunities.The theme was interpreted as: Personalization and the preservation of dignity. The conclusion that can be drawn from this study is that the participants had an overall positive view of the usage of this specific digital photo diary for people suffering from dementia, but rigorous considerations needs before implementation of the device and regularly follow ups if dignity is to be maintained for people with dementia.
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Harrefors, C. , Axelsson, K. , Lundquist, A. , Lundquist, B. and Sävenstedt, S. (2013) Professional caregivers’ perceptions on the prerequisites for and consequences of people with mild dementia using a digital photo diary. Open Journal of Nursing, 3, 42-54. doi: 10.4236/ojn.2013.31006.
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