On September 15, commemorating the World Day of Alzheimer’s, which is celebrated on September 21, Mr. Ismael Frías Pulido defended his PhD thesis at the University of Jaén. This thesis is entitled Quality and use of websites in Spanish with information about the Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias for patients and caregivers. Supervisors have been Dr. Mr. Pedro A. Palomino Moral and Dr. Mr. Rafael del Pino Casado, members of the research group CuiDsalud, within the topic Caregivers and Informal and family care.
This thesis remark that aging population is one of the most important social phenomena today, becoming a major challenge for societies of european countries. The number of people aged 65 and over in Spain reaches 8.6 million and represents 18.5% of the total population. Due to the aging of the world population, care for people with dementia is expected to be a major challenge for modern societies. Dementia is a disease that generates disability and dependence for aging people and it is a family illness, as it affects directly family stability. This is because the family is the fundamental resource to care dependent elderly people, and almost 80% are women caregivers.
Considering the characteristics of this disease and its evolution, the female family caregivers are under a strong stressor and overloaded, witch have repercussions in health and quality of life. They often have the task of caring for a dependent person 24 hours a day every day of the week.
In this context, Internet could be a way to access to information for these women caregivers through mobiles, for example. It is a well-known fact that Internet is the most widely used resource for searching health information. This is the key to begin this thesis, it analyzed the characteristics of available information about dementias and Alzheimer in Spanish in Internet, especially use, quality and accessibility.
This work provides a list of 124 websites ordered according to relevance, use, type of recommendation and quality. The relevance and quality of these sites is low, and their use is determined by the relevance and general nature of their contents.
This thesis pretend to encourage the design of new intervention strategies, adapting existing web resources or creating new ones. All this focused on family caregivers.