The context of dementia: visualizing the features of daily life for rural-dwelling, informal, veteran dementia dyads

Thumbnail Image
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
University of Alabama Libraries

Rural-dwelling, informal, veteran dementia caregiving dyads (a veteran diagnosed with dementia (PWD) and their caregiver) make up a population with unique needs compared to their non-caregiving or urban caregiver counterparts. However, according to commonly used measures of and approaches to studying rurality (e.g., Rural-Urban Commuting Area Codes, RUCA), individual differences are underrepresented in the design, implementation, and delivery of dementia-focused care for rural older PWDs and their caregivers. The present study qualitatively categorized daily life needs in the context of informal, rural-dwelling, dementia caregiving, and developed visualizations to present the findings across several stakeholder groups. In turn, the objective of this study was to gain more contextualized awareness this population’s daily-life needs by means of this novel qualitative-visual analysis approach. Rapid, thematic, and content analyses were performed on 30 semi-structured interviews with dementia dyads associated with the Tuscaloosa VA Medical Center. A categorical understanding of the sample’s daily life needs (including activities and resources) emerged and was translated visually using two data visualization modalities: Network Analysis and Life-Space Mapping. Results suggest this two-stage method of qualitative and visual analysis successfully delivers insight into the daily life needs of rural-dwelling, veteran, dementia dyads for care providers and policy makers. Taking a visual approach to qualitative needs assessment and rural care may assist in the development of tailored dementia caregiving interventions from integrated medical systems, such as the Veterans Health Administration.

Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
Clinical psychology