Introduction The Namaste Advanced Demntia Care Programme is a holistic, novel approach based on the five senses, aimed at evoking an emotional response and providing positive ways of communicating with those who have advanced dementia (www.namastecare.com). Namaste has been utilised in care homes internationally (Simard and Volicer, 2010) yet use in the home setting has been scarce. A hospice in the North East of England has implemented Namaste in peoples’ homes through training and matching volunteers to families.
Aim To begin to understand what works, for whom and in which circumstances when implementing Namaste Care in the home setting.
Methods A realist evaluation framework was utilised to develop initial programme theories about the use of Namaste in the home setting (Pawson and Tilley, 1997). The theories were developed through three realist focus groups with Namaste volunteers. Data was analysed using context-mechanism-outcome configurations (CMOC). The theories detail if, how and under which circumstances the Namaste Programme works.
Results Four initial programme theories were developed which were focused around (1) the impact on the person (2) the use of Namaste in the home setting (3) family’s independent use of Namaste (4) the relationships between the person with dementia, the volunteer and the family.
Conclusion De-hospitalisation is a current policy driver (Foot et al., 2014); this public health approach works towards creating a community of care through engaging the family and community volunteers. The programme theories developed can now be tested in a larger scale study to further demonstrate the impact of Namaste in the home setting.
. Foot C, Sonola L, Bennett L, Fitzsimons B, Raleigh V, Gregory S. Managing quality in community health care services. The King’s Fund2014.
. Pawson R, Tilley N. Realistic Evaluation, London Sage.
. Simard J, Volicer L. Effects of Namaste Care on Residents Who Do Not Benefit From Usual Activities. American Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease & Other Dementias2010;25:46–50.
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