Dementia Stigma Reduction (DESeRvE): A randomised controlled trial to reduce dementia related stigma in the general public
Dementia is a stigmatised condition and dementia-related stigma is undoubtedly harmful with the ability to cause negative effects on people with dementia and their carers. Stigma can lead to low self-esteem, isolation and poorer mental health in people with dementia, and increased burden in caregivers. Stigma can also prevent people from seeking help. This results in people missing out on timely diagnosis and the utilisation of health and social services. Timely diagnosis is beneficial to people with dementia and carers as it provides time to better plan for future care, delays institutionalisation, reduces costs to the health system, and leads to timely treatment and slower cognitive decline. It is therefore vital to develop programs to reduce the stigma of dementia. In this study, we are developing and evaluating the short-term effectiveness of an online intervention programme (Dementia Stigma Reduction (DESeRvE)) aimed at the general public to reduce dementia-related stigma.
Dr Sarang Kim is a NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Cognitive Health Research Fellow at the Centre for Research on Ageing, Health and Wellbeing, the Australian National University.