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Thomas Jefferson University to Host Summit With National Experts to Discuss 'A New Age in Dementia Care'
Date:8/26/2008

PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 26 /PRNewswire/ -- The Jefferson Center for Applied Research on Aging and Health (CARAH) at Thomas Jefferson University, along with its soon-to-be-unveiled innovative Living Laboratory for Elder Care, will present the latest findings in dementia care at a summit it is hosting on September 17.

"A New Age in Dementia Care: Turning Evidence Into Practice" will bring together nationally recognized leaders to explore ways to transform the landscape of care to families suffering from this devastating disease. As part of this, the summit will explore innovations and breakthroughs in delivering evidence-based clinical services, training health professionals, and conducting research to support persons with dementia and their families, both in the home and community.

"We expect the summit to challenge working professionals to take a new look at what they are doing in dementia care while sharing with them ways to turn research into practice," says Laura N. Gitlin, Ph.D., director of CARAH. The summit will also provide a glimpse into The Living Laboratory, which Gitlin calls "the fulfillment of Jefferson's new vision of practice. The Living Laboratory will take what CARAH's researchers have learned (and continue to learn) and train others -- both healthcare professionals and lay caregivers -- as to best practices in the field so this newfound knowledge can do the most good," she said.

"Our aim is to translate research into real world service," said Janice P. Burke, Ph.D., dean of the Jefferson School of Health Professions and chair of the Department of Occupational Therapy. Burke and Gitlin are co-executive directors of the Living Lab. "The ultimate goal is to provide older adults with functional difficulties and those with dementia and their caregivers access to the best care possible."

The Jefferson Center for Applied Research on Aging and Health seeks to improve the lives of older adults and their family members through research, training of health professionals and implementation of evidence-based clinical services. CARAH is committed to enhancing the quality of life for older adults and family caregivers by developing, testing and disseminating innovative community and home-based health and human services. CARAH explores opportunities for academic-community partnerships and facilitates interdisciplinary approaches to problems of public health importance covering the topics of physical frailty, health disparities, dementia care, end-of-life comfort care, mental health and quality-of-life issues.

Learn more about CARAH's research at http://www.jefferson.edu/jchp/carah/. Learn more about Jefferson's occupational therapy programs at http://www.jefferson.edu/jchp/jshp/ot/. For information about the summit, go to http://www.jefferson.edu/jchp/carah/conf.cfm.


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SOURCE Thomas Jefferson University
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