Exploring the economics of hospital care for people with dementia: A PhD Project

PhD Student

Beth Thompson


Health and Care Research Wales

Project Summary


A 2009 Alzheimer's Society survey found that 77% of carers thought the quality of care received on hospital admission was unsatisfactory, with a lack of person centred care being the greatest cause for dissatisfaction. Whether it is for planned procedures or during crisis, hospital admission can be a time of great distress. People with dementia often get admitted to hospital with seemingly minor illnesses, yet end up staying for a long period of time. Longer periods of hospitalisation are often associated with a decline in physical health and a worsening of dementia symptoms.


To apply health economics methods to explore, model and understand how dementia affects costs of hospital care in older people.


  1. A systematic literature review will be conducted, to explore what is currently known about hospital stays for people with dementia and the associated economic costs.
  2. A quantitative analysis of length of hospital stay for people with dementia admitted to Welsh Hospitals.
  3. A mixed methods approach (questionnaires and interviews) will be utilised, to explore what best practice initiatives in the care of people with dementia have been adopted and are employed in practice.
  4. A programme budgeting marginal analysis (PBMA) will be undertaken, to explore the effect of changing current funding patterns for hospital care of people with dementia, in order to make hospital stays a better experience for people with dementia and their carers.

For further information, please contact Beth Thompson at b.thompson@bangor.ac.uk.