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  2. Designing virtual communities of practice for informal caregivers of Alzheimer's patients: An integrative review

Designing virtual communities of practice for informal caregivers of Alzheimer's patients: An integrative review

The main aim of this study is to review the literature to show how ideas around virtual communities of practice (VCoP) offer a model for supporting informal caregivers of Alzheimer's patients (caregivers) to learn how to deal with caregiving demands. Caregivers are individuals who have a significant personal relationship with and provide a broad range of unpaid assistance to an older person or an adult with a chronic or disabling condition outside of a professional or formal framework. This review will examine the current evidence on the needs of caregivers, identify dimensions to be considered in VCoP design and suggest further directions of research. The investigation is an integrative review that builds a bridge between different areas of work. The outcome is eleven dimensions for the design of successful VCoPs for caregivers: Network Structure, Technology, Moderator, Scale, Alignment, Community Design, Sense of Trust, Knowledge Sharing, Sustainability, Ethics and Evaluation. In addition, we propose a Tree Metaphor to present our research results. Well-designed interventions based on VCoP principles have the potential of addressing caregivers' needs. 

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Key Information

Type of Reference
Jour
Type of Work
Review
Publisher
Sage
ISBN/ISSN
14604582
Publication Year
2020
Issue Number
4
Journal Titles
Health Informatics Journal
Volume Number
26
Start Page
2976
End Page
2991