My research programme: Improving the quality and humanity of care for people with dementia in acute hospital wards 

 Dr Katie Featherstone. Reader, School of Healthcare Sciences, Cardiff University. 

My goal is to improve everyday care for patients with dementia in all hospitals. The focus of my programme is the development of clinically relevant detailed ethnographic research that identifies the needs of people with dementia, their carers, and ward staff within the acute hospital setting. 

In 3 years, I have established a track-record of leading interdisciplinary teams as PI and obtaining research funding. Current grants obtained include the NIHR HS&DR Researcher-led stream funded studies ‘Investigating the management of refusal of care in people with dementia admitted to hospital with an acute condition’ (£447,000) and ‘Understanding continence practices in acute settings for people with dementia: raising awareness and improving care’ (£505,000) (in submission). Both studies are hospital ethnographies that involve long-term engagement within acute hospitals across England and Wales. This work has a strong focus on improving the quality and humanity of care and providing the empirical foundations for developing low-cost interventions and training. The findings are already having an impact within NHS Trusts and my distinctive approach demonstrates the utility and transferability of sociological theoretical developments that respond to contemporary challenges within clinical settings.

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