Collaborative Learning through a Virtual Community of Practice in Dementia Care Support: A Scoping Review
2. Materials and Methods
2.1. Study Design
2.2. Search Strategy and Databases
2.3. Eligibility Criteria
2.4. Selection of Sources of Evidence
2.5. Data Analysis
2.6. Ethical Considerations
3.1. Study Characteristics
3.2.1. Knowledge Acquisition
3.2.2. Strengthening Resilience Capacity
Strengths and Limitations
5. Conclusions and Implications
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Data Availability Statement
Conflicts of Interest
|SECTION||ITEM||PRISMA-ScR CHECKLIST ITEM||REPORTED ON PAGE #|
|Title||1||Identify the report as a scoping review.||1|
|Structured summary||2||Provide a structured summary that includes (as applicable): background, objectives, eligibility criteria, sources of evidence, charting methods, results, and conclusions that relate to the review questions and objectives.||1|
|Rationale||3||Describe the rationale for the review in the context of what is already known. Explain why the review questions/objectives lend themselves to a scoping review approach.||1 & 2|
|Objectives||4||Provide an explicit statement of the questions and objectives being addressed with reference to their key elements (e.g., population or participants, concepts, and context) or other relevant key elements used to conceptualize the review questions and/or objectives.||2|
|Protocol and registration||5||Indicate whether a review protocol exists; state if and where it can be accessed (e.g., a Web address); and, if available, provide registration information, including the registration number.||NA|
|Eligibility criteria||6||Specify characteristics of the sources of evidence used as eligibility criteria (e.g., years considered, language, and publication status), and provide a rationale.||3|
|Information sources *||7||Describe all information sources in the search (e.g., databases with dates of coverage and contact with authors to identify additional sources), as well as the date the most recent search was executed.||3|
|Search||8||Present the full electronic search strategy for at least one database, including any limits used, such that it could be repeated.||3|
|Selection of sources of evidence †||9||State the process for selecting sources of evidence (i.e., screening and eligibility) included in the scoping review.||3|
|Data charting process ‡||10||Describe the methods of charting data from the included sources of evidence (e.g., calibrated forms or forms that have been tested by the team before their use, and whether data charting was done independently or in duplicate) and any processes for obtaining and confirming data from investigators.||5–8|
|Data items||11||List and define all variables for which data were sought and any assumptions and simplifications made.||3|
|Critical appraisal of individual sources of evidence§||12||If done, provide a rationale for conducting a critical appraisal of included sources of evidence; describe the methods used, and how this information was used in any data synthesis (if appropriate).||NA|
|Synthesis of results||13||Describe the methods of handling and summarizing the data that were charted.||3 & 4|
|Selection of sources of evidence||14||Give numbers of sources of evidence screened, assessed for eligibility, and included in the review, with reasons for exclusions at each stage, ideally using a flow diagram.||4|
|Characteristics of sources of evidence||15||For each source of evidence, present characteristics for which data were charted and provide the citations.||5|
|Critical appraisal within sources of evidence||16||If done, present data on critical appraisal of included sources of evidence (see item 12).||NA|
|Results of individual sources of evidence||17||For each included source of evidence, present the relevant data that were charted that relate to the review questions and objectives.||5, 9–10|
|Synthesis of results||18||Summarize and/or present the charting results as they relate to the review questions and objectives.||5, 9–10|
|Summary of evidence||19||Summarize the main results (including an overview of concepts, themes, and types of evidence available), link to the review questions and objectives, and consider the relevance to key groups.||11 & 12|
|Limitations||20||Discuss the limitations of the scoping review process.||12|
|Conclusions||21||Provide a general interpretation of the results with respect to the review questions and objectives, as well as potential implications and/or next steps.||12|
|Funding||22||Describe sources of funding for the included sources of evidence, as well as sources of funding for the scoping review. Describe the role of the funders of the scoping review.||13|
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|Author, Year, Country||Aim(s), Design, Sample Population and Ethics||Study Context and Concept||Results|
|Anderson et al. (2017) ,|
|Aim: The study explored how family caregivers of PwD use the social media platform (blogs) as part of the individual caregiving experience.|
Design: Qualitative descriptive content analysis
Sample population: Family caregivers.
Sample size: 10 blog sites
|Context: Social media blog genre “the church of online support”.|
Concept: Social media blog genre on dementia caregiving experience.
|The social media blog genre content analysis showed family caregivers used blogs as platform: for engaging and communicating with others: “…a place to update people…”; to seek and disseminate information; to record caregiving experience, decline of disease, etc.;“ …to document [for] whatever purpose...”; “…as a way of contributing to society…“; and “…to write notes so that later down the road I can write a manual or a book and donate the proceeds.”|
|Bachmann (2020) ,|
USA, the UK and Canada
|Aim: To examine the nature of the caregiver’s work, its mental and physical demands, experience and questions, and the relationship between the persons with Alzheimer’s dementia (AD), the caregiver, and family members.|
Design: A content analysis of longitudinal social media communication.
Population: Persons with Alzheimer’s dementia, family caregivers, care professionals.
Sample size: 28
|Context: Facebook social networking site.|
Concept: Facebook post on Basic Activity of Daily Living (BADLs) and Instrument Activity of Daily Living (IADLs) support information from persons with Alzheimer’s dementia, family caregivers, care professionals.
|Discussion posts from patients included: self-feeding, healthcare and well-being, e.g., taking prescribed medication; positive effects of entertainment, e.g., watching movie, listening to music, etc.; transferring/moving in the community; managing money; shopping; preparing meal; getting help from family members; sleeping disorders; appointments, e.g., tests and surgeries; caregivers and facility selection; ageing, death, and dying. Others include engagements in interpersonal communication between caregivers and persons with Alzheimer’s dementia; religious observance, holiday, or birthday anniversary; social groups and other public events; care of pets; and safety procedures and emergency response.|
Discussion post from family caregivers and care professionals included: exhaustion and feeling of giving up; changes in health state of a patient caregivers success and positive feeling; violent behavior; financial issues.
|Efthymiou et al. (2021) , Greece and Cyprus||Aim: Identify the levels of Health Literacy (HL) and eHealth Literacy (eHL) among carers of person with dementia in Greece and Cyprus, and to search for the associations with other caring concepts.|
Design: Descriptive correlational.
Sample population: Informal carers of persons with dementia.
Sample size: 241
|Context: Face to face Internet survey platform.|
Concept: Care-giving self-efficacy, coping strategies, care-giving perceptions, and social support.
|Higher score on eHeals-Carer “information seeking” was related with higher use of emotion-focused strategies, care-giving self-efficacy, and lower score of problematic/dysfunctional coping.|
Primary informal carers reported a high level of HL and eHL. Carers with higher HL were more likely to report higher score of eHL.
|Fauth et al. (2021) ,|
|Aim: To evaluate a pilot Acceptance Commitment Therapy (ACT) for caregivers program, a community-based, self-guided, online adaptation of ACT.|
Design: Pre/post-test and four week
Population: Family caregivers. Sample size: 160
|Context: An online dementia education library.|
Concept: Online ACT for family caregivers on evaluating depressive symptoms, burden, stressful reactions to Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia (BPSD), positive aspects of caregiving, and quality of life.
|Online ACT showed decreased depressive symptoms, burden, and stress reactions to behavioral symptoms, and increased positive aspects of caregiving and quality of life.|
ACT-specific measures improved, with decreases in cognitive function and psychological inflexibility, and improvements in living according to personal values, i.e., valuing progress increased; valuing obstruction decreased.
|Griffiths et al. (2018) , USA||Aim: Assessment of caregiver burden, caregiver competency, and frequency of Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia (BPSD).|
Design: Six weeks pre/post-test.
Sample population: Dementia caregivers.
Sample size: 22
|Context: Online Tele-Savvy caregiver program.|
Concept: Psychoeducation program on caregiver burden, caregiver competency, and frequency BPSD.
|Contributed significantly to reductions in caregiver burden and depressive symptoms, a significant increase in caregiver competence, and significant reductions in the average number of BPSD and the BPSD that occur daily or more.|
|Kajiyama et al. (2018)  South America||Aim: Develop and evaluate a culturally appropriate intervention for Hispanic/Latino caregivers of persons with dementia using a structured online program|
Design: Six weeks pre/post-test
Sample population: Dementia caregivers.
Sample size: 25
|Context: Webnovela Mirela, an online Spanish Telenovela program.|
Concept: Webnovela Mirela, an online Spanish Telenovela psychoeducation program to teach caregivers coping with dementia caregiving.
|Significant decrease in levels of stress and symptoms of depression among dementia caregivers.|
Technology enables support programs to reach a broader audience in a cost-effective manner.
|Madden et al. (2022) , the UK||Aim: To increase the accessibility and efficiency of care support for families affected by dementia.|
Design: Participatory action research
Sample population: Family caregivers
Sample size: 52
Ethics: Not applicable
|Context: Online video consultations|
Concept: Video consultation to increase access and efficiency of care support for family caregivers
|Video consultations enable carers to put face to voice, focus, and connected compared to using a telephone conversation, which made them felt disconnected and unfocused.|
Care professionals were anxious when discussing during video consultation, due to absence of physical contact, which often served as prompts, sustained their discussions, and encouraged disclosure.
Lack of facial contact led to feeling helpless and disempowerment.
Inability to use therapeutic touch.
Challenges to change from one task to another with video consultation.
The situation was described as firefighting and confusing; frequent changes occurred regarding personal and professional info and guidelines; expressed disappointment for the initiated video consultation not being offered routinely for its innovative nature.
|Poole (2020) , the UK||Aim: To provide accessible sources|
of relevant and engaging information to family carers, and to enable carers to create a space in which they could engage in peer support.
Design: Cross-sectional design.
Sample population: Family caregivers, care pro-fessional.
Sample size: 36
|Context: Massive Open Online Courses Survey (MOOCs).|
Concept: Online resource for educational and support need for family caregivers and care professionals.
|The MOOC survey showed that over 90% of learners reported acquiring new skills and knowledge. Over two-thirds and three-quarters applied knowledge acquired in their daily lives and shared what they have learned with others. The peer support element enhanced learner interactions, as well as the course content, e.g., comparing experiences; offering guidance; suggesting solutions; exchanging hints and tips; providing encouragement and condolences; and empathizing with each other. The ‘safe space’ section also provided encouragement for the sharing of personal feelings regarding sensitive matters, e.g., grieving process, however, posts from participants largely influence the course content managed by the course educator to control inappropriate posts. Although developed for family caregivers, it has seen the likes of persons with dementia and care professionals advancing their knowledge in dementia care and progression.|
|Romero-Mas et al. (2021) ,|
|Aim: Describe the relation between QoL of the family caregivers of a person with Alzheimer’s disease, and their participation in a virtual community of practice (vCoP).|
Design: Pre/post-test quasi-experimental.
Sample population: Family
caregivers and health professionals
Sample size: 38 with 1 drop out.
|Context: The application “Estic amb tu - I’m with you”|
Concept: Online social support network to evaluate QoL of family caregiver’s participation in vCoP
|The application “Estic amb tu - I’m with you” showed that caregivers improve their QoL while participating in a vCoP. There was no significant difference in QoL among male and female, except for their age demographic parameter. The authors noted a negative correlation between “length of caring” and psychological and social domain of QoL. There was a difference between the relationship with the person with Alzheimer’s (spouse, offspring, and others), and overall QoL was improved through vCoP, except for the spouse parameter. Family caregivers found meaning in providing care to a loved one, feeling more useful, gaining new skills, and experience. There was no correlation between the functional deterioration of the person with Alzheimer and caregivers’ QoL. eHealth literacy impacted positively on the physical domain of the caregivers’ QoL.|
|Wilkerson et al. (2018) |
|Aim: The study introduced Friendsourcing Web application (FPS) and examines the effects on the psychological well-being of AD caregivers.|
Design: Pre/post test
Sample population: AD caregivers
Sample size: 12
|Context: Friendsourcing Web application|
Concept: AD caregivers discussion on emotional and informational support via Friendsourcing Web application
|A Wilcoxon signed-rank test showed that caregiving burden and perceived stress while emotional and informational support significantly reduced and increased, respectively. Subjective interviews and discussions identified: caregiving belief experience, cognitive transformation, and new behaviors learned (seeking and trying new caregiving ways/roles and applying them) from Facebook social network described as ‘’FPS’’ to reduce burden and perceived stress.|
|Strengthening resilience capacity|
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Dedzoe, J.D.-S.; Malmgren Fänge, A.; Christensen, J.; Lethin, C. Collaborative Learning through a Virtual Community of Practice in Dementia Care Support: A Scoping Review. Healthcare 2023, 11, 692. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11050692
Dedzoe JD-S, Malmgren Fänge A, Christensen J, Lethin C. Collaborative Learning through a Virtual Community of Practice in Dementia Care Support: A Scoping Review. Healthcare. 2023; 11(5):692. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11050692Chicago/Turabian Style
Dedzoe, Justice Dey-Seshie, Agneta Malmgren Fänge, Jonas Christensen, and Connie Lethin. 2023. "Collaborative Learning through a Virtual Community of Practice in Dementia Care Support: A Scoping Review" Healthcare 11, no. 5: 692. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare11050692