Perceptions of a cognitive rehabilitation group by older people living with cognitive impairment and their caregivers: A qualitative interview study

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Abstract

Cognitive rehabilitation has been developed to improve quality of life, activities of daily living and mood for people with cognitive impairment, but the voice of people with cognitive impairment has been underrepresented. This study aimed to understand the experience of people living with cognitive impairment, as well as their caregivers who took part in a cognitive rehabilitation intervention programme. Twelve individuals with cognitive impairment and 15 caregivers participated in individual qualitative interviews. The interview data were analysed in three steps: 1) familiarisation of the transcripts; 2) identification of themes; 3) re-interpretation, refinement and integration of themes with methodological auditors. Both participants living with cognitive impairment and caregivers valued the comfortable environment with friendly, caring and supportive group leaders who taught practical tips and strategies. The participants living with cognitive impairment enjoyed socialising with like others. Caregivers benefited from learning about memory problems and sharing their challenges with other caregivers. The participants living with cognitive impairment emphasised the benefits of relational and practical aspects, whereas the caregivers valued the informational and emotional support. In conclusion, both participants living with cognitive impairment and caregivers found the cognitive rehabilitation group useful.

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