Implementing a Reablement Intervention, “Care of People With Dementia in Their Environments (COPE)”: A Hybrid Implementation-Effectiveness Study

Lindy Clemson, Kate Laver, Miia Rahja, Jennifer Culph, Justin N. Scanlan, Sally Day, Tracy Comans, Yun-Hee Jeon, Lee-Fay Low, Maria Crotty, Sue Kurrle, Monica Cations, Cathy Piersol, Laura Gitlin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Background and Objectives: The translation of reablement programs into practice is lagging despite strong evidence for interventions that maintain function for the person living with dementia as well as improve carer well-being. The aim was to evaluate the implementation of an evidence-based program, Care of People with Dementia in Their Environments (COPE), into health services. Research Design and Methods: An implementation-effectiveness hybrid design was used to evaluate implementation outcomes while simultaneously involving a pragmatic pre-post evaluation of outcomes for people with dementia. We report uptake, fidelity to intervention, outcomes for people living with dementia and carers, and beliefs and behaviors of interventionists contributing to successful implementation. Results: Seventeen organizations in Australia across 3 health contexts, 38 occupational therapists, and 17 nurses participated in training and implementation. While there were challenges and delays in implementation, most organizations were able to offer the program and utilized different models of funding. Overall, we found there was moderate fidelity to components of the program. Pre-post outcomes for carer well-being and coping (Perceived Change Index, p <. 001) and activity engagement of the person living with dementia (p =. 002) were significantly increased, replicating previous trial results. What contributed most to therapists implementing the program (Determinants of Implementation Behaviour Questionnaire) was a stronger intent to deliver (p <. 001), higher confidence (p <. 001), a sense of control in delivery (p =. 004), and a belief the program was very useful to their clients (p =. 002). Discussion and Implications: This study demonstrated that implementation is possible in multiple health systems and beneficial to individuals and their families.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbergnaa105
Pages (from-to)965-976
Number of pages12
JournalThe Gerontologist
Issue number6
Early online date17 Aug 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2021


  • Carers
  • Dyadic intervention
  • Health services
  • Non-pharmacological
  • Reablement
  • dementia
  • Australia
  • caregivers
  • personal satisfaction
  • occupational therapists


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