Stakeholders’ perceptions and experiences of animal assisted interventions for people with dementia: a qualitative evidence synthesis engaging patient and public

Date & Time
Tuesday, September 5, 2023, 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM
Location Name
Session Type
Patient or healthcare consumers involvement and shared decision making
Zhang D1, Hennessy M2, Houghton C1
1School of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Galway, Ireland
2College of Medicine and Health, University College Cork, Ireland

Background: Animal-assisted intervention (AAI) has developed as a popular psychosocial intervention for people living with dementia, which can have positive effects on mood, social and physical activity, and quality of life (QoL) of people living with dementia. However, the perceptions and experiences of AAI by stakeholders and the factors influencing the implementation of AAI remain underexplored. Patient and public involvement (PPI) in research is widely prompted to enhance the transparency, confidence, and quality of research. However, the experience of involving people living with dementia and their caregivers in qualitative evidence synthesis (QES) is not well reported.
Objectives: This presentation will describe the experience of working with PPI contributors on an ongoing QES that explores the perceptions and experiences of AAI for people living with dementia.
Methods: Before this review began, a PPI invitation and plan was sent to the Alzheimer Society of Ireland (ASI). Two people with dementia agreed to meet with the review team to discuss and agree what their contributions to the review would be. A schedule of PPI meetings was developed in partnership. The stages of the review process and the PPI involvement will be described.
Conclusions: The reflections from this presentation will guide reviewers and PPI partnerships on what works well and what could be improved when working together on a QES. Any specific considerations for people living with dementia as coproducers of research will be identified.
Patient, public and/or healthcare consumer involvement: Two PPI contributors from ASI will be involved in all stages of the QES, including 1) sharing their experiences and values around AAI; 2) advising on research design; 3) reviewing, and assisting with readability of, research results and findings; and 4) deciding on how best to share the research findings with the public.