Cultural diversity and dementia in Scottish care homes

Steve Mullay, Pat Schofield, Amanda Clarke, Willie Primrose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Background: theoretical guidance and policy directives emphasize the necessity of considering the culturally-specific needs of health and social care service users as part of ‘person-centred’ approaches to care. This article outlines the ideas underpinning an ongoing PhD study of the interactions between care staff and residents which is aimed at gaining insights into how person-centred care is fulfilled for people with dementia in Scottish care homes.

Discussion: certain dynamics may constrain the deployment of culturally-meaningful care approaches for certain service users in Scottish care homes. These include limited understandings of the nature of cultural diversity in modern Scotland, failure to recognize the import of ‘inter-generational’ cultural change, lack of research around the interactions between staff and service users from different cultural backgrounds, and a sketchy demographic picture of the ethnic/cultural composition of Scottish care home populations. Groups of service users in particular settings (such as older people with dementia in long-term care) may be especially vulnerable to the effects of care processes constituted under such circumstances.

Conclusion: poorly recognized gaps in understanding of the sociocultural and historical influences which help constitute ‘the person’ in many Scottish care home residents may exist. If these are found to constrain ‘knowing the person’, can the term ‘person-centred’ be meaningfully applied to care?
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)716-720
Number of pages5
JournalBritish Journal of Nursing
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jun 2011


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