A Universal Design Perspective on Care Homes for Elderly People with and without Dementia

Nanet Mathiasen, Inge Mette Kirkeby, Lone Sigbrand

Publikation: Bidrag til bog/antologi/rapport/konference proceedingKonferenceartikel i proceedingForskningpeer review

3 Citationer (Scopus)
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Within the coming years considerable resources will be spent on designing assisted living facilities for elderly people with dementia. Traditionally care homes are designed for elderly with physical impairment. However, people with dementia have others and supplementary needs. An important challenge is therefore to identify differences and similarities in what makes supportive, pleasant environments for both groups. As the group of people with Alzheimer's disease is numerous, this paper focuses on characteristics related to Alzheimer's - typically difficulties related to orientation, coping with larger groups of residential units and a lack of ability to handle welfare technology. In these respects, care homes for people with dementia differ from other settings. However, people with dementia are known to be positively sensitive to a wide range of architectural qualities such as sensory experiences, atmosphere and access to green outdoor areas. The paper argues that since these qualities have importance for a wider group of elderly, the design of care homes in this respect can be considered as an example of universal design in general. Pointing out some similarities and differences in demands for elderly with and without dementia the paper raises the question in how far it might be possible to apply some architectural qualities to care homes in general. If possible, it may lift the quality of the physical environment and at the same time make fewer alterations necessary when care homes are changed to house other inhabitants. The analysis is based on existing literature combined with own studies.
TitelTransforming our World Through Design, Diversity and Education : Proceedings of Universal Design and Higher Education in Transformation Congress 2018
RedaktørerGerald Craddock, Cormac Doran, Larry McNutt, Dónal Rice
Antal sider9
ForlagIOS Press
Publikationsdato30 okt. 2018
ISBN (Trykt)978-1-61499-922-5
ISBN (Elektronisk)978-1-61499-923-2
StatusUdgivet - 30 okt. 2018
BegivenhedUniversal Design and Higher Education in Transformation Congress - Dublin, Irland
Varighed: 30 okt. 20182 nov. 2018


KonferenceUniversal Design and Higher Education in Transformation Congress
NavnStudies in Health Technology and Informatics


  • UD, assisting living facilities, dementia, Alzheimer's, care homes, healthcare


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