Dementia special care units: A policy and family perspective

Debra Parker-Oliver, Myra Aud, Jane Bostick, Benyamin Schwarz, Ruth Brent Tofle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Despite continued interest and growth in special care units in the United States, there is no uniform agreement on characteristics for these units, specific outcomes, or satisfaction with them. This study examined family satisfaction with Dementia Special Care Units (SCUs) using a modified standardized instrument and follow-up interviews. The study included five SCUs in one state, three participating in a dementia SCU demonstration project. Family outcomes were evaluated using surveys and interviews. The only significant difference between facilities in the demonstration project and the comparison facilities was one variable noting family with residents in the demonstration project had more positive perceptions regarding resident safety. The study illustrates a need for policy makers to more clearly identify and regulate special aspects of SCUs, taking family perceptions into consideration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-125
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Housing for the Elderly
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2005


  • Dementia Special Care Units
  • Family satisfaction
  • Perceptions of care
  • Special care unit policy


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