What motivates patients and carers to participate in dementia studies?

Emma Law, Tom Russ, Peter Connelly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


AIM: The aim of this study was to explore what motivates people to participate in dementia research.

METHOD: Three focus groups, attended by carers and people with dementia who had already volunteered to take part in dementia research, were used to explore motivation. Their thoughts and feelings about brain tissue donation were also explored. An adaptation of the participation chain model was used. A fourth focus group was given a supplementary questionnaire examining use of resources. Focus group content was analysed using a content analysis approach to identify themes.

FINDINGS: Individualistic motivations included increased confidence and a chance to have a say. Collectivistic motivations included 'helping through being part of something bigger'. Mobilisation (catalysing) issues included a desire for change, and 'being asked'. In response to the questionnaire participants identified that they would have taken part regardless of any tangible benefits, with all saying that they would not have been put off by any of the costs.

CONCLUSION: Participants in these focus groups were keen to be involved in dementia research and discounted any potential costs to themselves. They highlighted that being asked was an important factor in engaging them in dementia research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-6
Number of pages6
JournalNursing Older People
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2013


  • Caregivers
  • Dementia
  • Focus Groups
  • Humans
  • Motivation
  • Patient Participation

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