Older adults and their families in a community mental health center: strategies for intervention.
Clinicians at a geriatric evaluation and treatment clinic include the patient's family in all stages of assessment and intervention so that the family can ultimately assume much of the responsibility for care. The family's strengths and weaknesses and its potential as a caretaker are assessed through a questionnaire and interviews. The major intervention techniques include explaining the patient's impairment and capabilities to the family, coordinating needed community resources, encouraging respite activities, allowing relatives to work through their own feelings, and taking responsibility for decision-making when necessary. A case history illustrates the assessment and intervention techniques.
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