A pilot study investigating the feasibility of symptom assessment manager (SAM), a Web-based real-time tool for monitoring challenging behaviors

Samantha M. Loi, Sangeeth Wanasinghage, Anita Goh, Nicola T. Lautenschlager, David G. Darby, Dennis Velakoulis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective: Improving and minimizing challenging behaviors seen in psychiatric conditions, including behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia are important in the care of people with these conditions. Yet there is a lack of systematic evaluation of these as a part of routine clinical care. The Neuropsychiatric Inventory is a validated and reliable tool for rating the severity and disruptiveness of challenging behaviors. We report on the evaluation of a Web-based symptom assessment manager (SAM), designed to address the limitation of previous tools using some of the Neuropsychiatric Inventory functions, to monitor behaviors by staff caring for people with dementia and other psychiatric conditions in inpatient and residential care settings. Methods: The SAM was piloted in an 8-bed inpatient neuropsychiatry unit over 5 months. Eleven nurses and 4 clinicians were trained in usage of SAM. Primary outcomes were usage of SAM and perceived usability, utility, and acceptance of SAM. Secondary outcomes were the frequencies of documented behavior. Usage data were analyzed using chi-square and logistic regression analyses. Results: The SAM was used for all admitted patients regardless of diagnosis, with a usage rate of 64% for nurses regularly employed in the unit. Staff provided positive feedback regarding the utility of SAM. Conclusions: The SAM appeared to offer individualized behavior assessment by providing a quick, structured, and standardized platform for assessing behavior in a real-world setting. Further research would involve trialing SAM with more staff in alternative settings such as in home or residential care settings.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)576-582
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Volume33
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2018

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