Employment-activity status and multidisciplinary care engagement in patients with newly diagnosed dementia

a 16-month audit study within an inner sydney community neurology clinic

Louise Rigney, Alexis Selby, Lily Chen, Tejas Patel, Yun T. Hwang, Anthony E. D. Mobbs, Rowena E. A. Mobbs

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstract


Introduction Dementia is one of the leading causes of mortality and morbidity in Australia. Attitudes towards dementia in the workplace, tailored adjustments for disability, and patient-centred ‘exit with dignity’ strategies are of objective and subjective importance to patient wellbeing. This study aimed to assess employment characteristics in those with newly diagnosed dementia, and engagement with multidisciplinary supports.

Methods An audit of patients with diagnosis of dementia (n=136,age51–96 yrs,M:F1.1:1) and mild cognitive impairment (MCI)(n=28,age56–83M:F0.6:1) over a 16 month period in 2017–18 was performed using online server data collection and retrospective analysis of general and employment demographic characteristics, presenting clinical information, and care across clinical psychology, psychotherapy, occupational therapy, speech pathology, and dietetics.

Results Younger onset dementia was present in 14(10%). Of the 122 dementia cases aged above 65 years, 24(20%) were employed-active, 98(80%) were retired, and none were unemployed. Approximately 5% had a background in healthcare. Allied health support was provided in 106 cases (78%) with ≥3 supports in 28(21%) and was more common in those who were retired(76%) versus employed-active (21%). Clinical psychology or psychotherapy support was provided in 50(37%) cases of dementia.

Conclusions The onset of dementia often co-exists with active employment. Community perception of employment status in dementia would be of future research interest. Provision of multidisciplinary allied health supports in dementia may facilitate coping, adjustment and cooperative strategies for exit with dignity but further studies are required in this cohort.
Original languageEnglish
Article number117
Pages (from-to)38
Number of pages1
JournalJournal of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Psychiatry
Issue numbere7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019
EventAustralian and New Zealand Association of Neurologists Annual Scientific Meeting 2019 - Melbourne, Australia
Duration: 19 May 201922 May 2019


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