Needs of persons with dementia and their family caregivers in dementia cafés


Background and aims

Several studies have shown the effectiveness and diversity of dementia cafés, whereas there are few published articles in academic research focusing on what persons with dementia and their family caregivers need and whether the services provided satisfy their needs. This study aimed to identify the needs of persons with dementia and their family caregivers participating in dementia cafés in Japan.


Interviews and participant observations were conducted in nine dementia cafés. Study participants were persons with dementia, their caregivers, and the staff in dementia cafés. Data were analysed using qualitative content analysis.

Results and discussion

A total of 24 participants were recruited. Needs for persons with dementia were subdivided into five categories: to express their feelings about their current condition; to be accommodated through consideration of their physical and cognitive status; for changes in their health conditions to be noticed; to enjoy entertainment; and to keep in touch with others inside and outside of the dementia café. Needs for family caregivers were subdivided into four subcategories: to express their feelings such as anxiety and guilt and complaints regarding caregiving; to consult about difficulties in daily life; to listen to other family caregivers’ experiences; and to keep in touch with others inside and outside of the dementia café. The needs of persons with dementia and family caregivers differ partly.


Dementia cafés should create programmes and comfortable environments answering to the differences of their needs.

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The authors express their gratitude to all the participants interviewed who were willing to talk about their thoughts and experiences, and to the administrators who accepted and cooperated with this study. This study was financially supported by GLAFS. GLAFS is a graduate programme in gerontology at the University of Tokyo.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Chie Fukui.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Statement of human and animal rights

All procedures performed in this study involving human participants were accodance with the ethical approval.

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Ethical approval was obtained from the Ethics Committee of the University of Tokyo (No. 16-188).

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All participants gave written or oral informed consent.

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Fukui, C., Fujisaki-Sueda-Sakai, M., Yokouchi, N. et al. Needs of persons with dementia and their family caregivers in dementia cafés. Aging Clin Exp Res 31, 1807–1816 (2019).

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  • Expectation
  • Informal service
  • Japan
  • Qualitative study
  • Requirement