The impact of psychosocial training on staff attitudes towards people living with dementia: a systematic review

Megan Mckenna, Laura Jane Elizabeth Brown, Claire Muller, Anvita VIKRAM, Katherine Berry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: As the prevalence of dementia increases, the need for appropriately trained and skilled care teams also increases. Staff attitudes towards people living with dementia have a significant impact on caregiving behaviours and staff and resident outcomes. Training within care settings is a potential way of improving staff attitudes towards residents in their care. This review aimed to (i) assess the effectiveness of psychosocial training in improving care staff attitudes towards dementia; and (ii) examine the content and focus of training.

Method: The review was conducted following PRISMA guidance and the protocol was registered on PROSPERO prior to conducting the review. A comprehensive search of peer-reviewed literature was undertaken using CINAHL, Medline and PsycINFO from inception to March 2021. All papers were evaluated using a quality appraisal tool.

Results: Ten studies met inclusion criteria and were of variable quality. However, six studies found significant improvements in staff attitudes towards dementia following staff training. The studies varied in terms of training focus and included behavioural, communication and cognitive based approaches.

Conclusions: Staff training could be an effective method of improving staff attitudes towards dementia in care settings. Further research adopting high quality randomised controlled designs to further explore staff attitudes following psychosocial training would make a valuable contribution to the literature base.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Older People Nursing
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 15 Jan 2023


  • dementia
  • staff
  • training
  • systematic
  • review


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