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Navigating Dementia Care project blog

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This is a project blog produced by researchers at the University of Warwick and hosted by Dementia Oxfordshire

People with dementia and their carers can struggle to access available support. There are several reasons for this: They may be unaware of the services that exist. They may not know which ones are relevant or available to them. Or they may not know how and when they can or should access support.

Several factors can contribute to obstacles to accessing available support services, including:

  • Health and social care systems are complex
  • Services change
  • Relevant information is not presented in an understandable way
  • Difficulties for some with using online tools
  • Stigma associated with dementia

Not accessing, and not knowing how to access, available services can lead to heightened anxiety and exhaustion. People can struggle to cope and plan ahead. This may result in a poorer quality of life.

Researchers from the University of Warwick and University of Oxford have been working with people affected by dementia, service providers and commissioners to find ways of addressing the issues mentioned above. This has included working closely with Dementia Oxfordshire to ensure that identified solutions are relevant and feasible.

You can find more information on the research team on our team members page.

This blog is a way for us to keep everyone informed about how our research is progressing and to stimulate conversations in the wider community about helping those who need support.

The Patient and Public Involvement and Engagement (PPI-E) Group and Research Team agreed on a provisional set of blog post topics and publication timeline, with Dr Chris Lawes volunteering to write the first set of blog posts given his involvement in the project from the very beginning.

We would like to thank all the members from the PPI-E Group and Stakeholder Reference Group who reviewed and commented on all the drafts of the Blog Posts prior to publication. Their comments and suggestions have been acted upon. We are grateful for all their time and support of this project.

Anyone interested in learning more about this work can contact the Principal Investigator of this project, Dr Rene Wiedner from the University of Warwick via email (

Blog post #5: Why I agreed to involve the service with this research

In this blog post, the Head of Service for Dementia Oxfordshire, Peter Johnson, talks through the reasons why he felt this research presented an important challenge for him and his service to get involved with.

Blog post #4: Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) – our experience of being involved in research during the COVID-19 pandemic

In this Blog Post, Chris Lawes, Debs Smith and Ruth Graham reflect on their experiences of being involved in a PPI Panel in 2021 for the research on accessing and navigating dementia services and support.

Blog post #3: Visual approaches

In this blog, Chris Lawes, who was Chair of the Patient-Public Involvement Panel on a programme of research around supporting the navigation of services for people living with dementia, reflects on some engagement work with people whose lives had been affected by dementia.

Blog post #2: The work to date – an overview

Chris Lawes has been Chair of the PPI Panel on a programme of work around supporting the navigation of services for dementia care. In this blog post, he briefly describes the work to date and gives an overview of how this has changed.

Blog post #1: The origins of this project

One in two people in the UK will have direct experience of dementia, either as a carer or as someone who develops dementia, or both.

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This project has been supported by grants from the University of Warwick and Warwick Business School.

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