February 7, 2023

Virtual Training for Managing Symptoms of Dementia: A Cultural Adaptation for Latino Caregivers


Maggie Ramirez, PhD, MS, MS

William L. Dowling Endowed Professor in Health Administration

Assistant Professor, Health Systems and Population Health

University of Washington School of Public Health


STAR-Caregivers Virtual Training and Follow-up (STAR-VTF) is an evidence-based intervention that teaches family caregivers how to manage behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia. The study objective was to identify what adaptations to STAR-VTF are needed to improve cultural relevance for Latino caregivers. Thirty caregivers of people living with dementia who self-identify as Hispanic/Latino and 14 providers of healthcare and social services were interviewed. Interview transcripts were analyzed using thematic analysis methods. The Cultural Treatment Adaptation Framework guided data collection and analysis. Three themes were identified: (1) there was a need to increase awareness about dementia and decrease stigma; (2) semantics mattered as certain words and phrases could be stigmatizing, offensive, or culturally inappropriate; and (3) there was a need to incorporate into program materials the traditional family structure and nature of caregiving in Latino families. Adaptations were performed on STAR-VTF, including expanding content to improve understanding of dementia, revising language that was viewed as problematic, and adding cultural examples to reflect the range of family involvement in caring for people living with dementia and multigenerational living. Findings from this study advance understanding of the Latino caregiver experience and how to modify programs to better serve their needs.

Learning objectives

1. Describe how Latino populations are disproportionately impacted by Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.

2. Understand an approach to the cultural adaptation of evidence-based behavioral interventions.

3. Apply strategies to improve cultural and linguistic appropriateness of dementia care for Latino populations.

2023 research seminars

January 3

Ian Bennett, MD, PHD

Nelson Chiu, MD

Nikki Gentile, MD, PhD

Emily Godfrey, MD, MPH

William R. Phillips, MD, MPH

Sebastian Tong, MD, MPH

Topic: NAPCRG Roundup
February 7

Maggie Ramirez, PhD, MS, MS

Topic: TBD
March 7

Grace Shih, MD, MAS

Christie Miles, MD

Claire Thomson, MD

Topic: TBD
April 4

Dan Cherkin, PhD

Topic: TBD
May 2

Kushang Patel, PhD, MPH

Topic: TBD
June 6

Bridget Whelan, MPH

Topic: TBD
September 5

AcademyHealth Annual Research Meeting Attendees

Topic: AcademyHealth Roundup
October 3

Amber Sabbatini, MD, MPH, FACEP

Topic: TBD
November 7

Ashley Johnson, MPH

Topic: TBD
December 5

Emily Godfrey, MD, MPH

Topic: TBD

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