This site uses cookies to measure how you use the website so it can be updated and improved based on your needs and also uses cookies to help remember the notifications you’ve seen, like this one, so that we don’t show them to you again. If you could also tell us a little bit about yourself, this information will help us understand how we can support you better and make this site even easier for you to use and navigate.

A telephone intervention for dementia caregivers: background, design, and baseline characteristics


Tremont, Geoffrey, Davis, Jennifer, Papandonatos, George D., Grover, Christine, Ott, Brian R., Fortinsky, Richard H., Gozalo, Pedro, Bishop, Duane S.


Contemporary Clinical Trials, Volume: 36, No.: 2, Pages.: 338-347

Year of Publication



Family caregivers of individuals with dementia are at heightened risk for emotional and mental health problems. Many caregivers do not seek assistance or become isolated in their caregiving role. Multi-component interventions have demonstrated efficacy for reducing emotional distress and burden, although these approaches are potentially costly and are not widely accessible. In response to these issues, we developed the Family Intervention: Telephone Tracking – Caregiver (FITT-C), which is an entirely telephone-based psychosocial intervention. The purpose of this paper is to describe the study design, methodology, and baseline data for the trial. This study uses a randomized controlled trial design to examine the efficacy of the FITT-C to reduce depressive symptoms and burden in distressed dementia caregivers. All participants (n=250) received a packet of educational materials and were randomly assigned to receive 6 months of the FITT-C intervention or non-directive telephone support. The FITT-C intervention was designed to reduce distress in caregivers and is based on the McMaster Model of Family Functioning, transition theory, and Lazarus and Folkman’s Stress and Coping Models. The primary dependent variables were depressive symptoms (Centers for Epidemiological Studies – Depression) and burden (Zarit Burden Interview, Revised Memory and Behavior Problems Checklist – Reaction). Secondary outcome measures included family functioning, self-efficacy, and health-related quality of life. Results of the study will provide important data about the efficacy of a telephone-based approach to reduce distress in dementia caregivers.; © 2013.

Bibtex Citation

@article{Tremont_2013, doi = {10.1016/j.cct.2013.07.011}, url = {}, year = 2013, month = {nov}, publisher = {Elsevier {BV}}, volume = {36}, number = {2}, pages = {338--347}, author = {Geoffrey Tremont and Jennifer Davis and George D. Papandonatos and Christine Grover and Brian R. Ott and Richard H. Fortinsky and Pedro Gozalo and Duane S. Bishop}, title = {A telephone intervention for dementia caregivers: Background, design, and baseline characteristics}, journal = {Contemporary Clinical Trials} }


aged, caregivers, cost of illness, dementia, depression, etiology, female, humans, interview psychological, male, methods, middle aged, psychiatric status rating scales, psychology, psychosocial intervention, psychotherapy, questionnaires, self efficacy, stress, psychological, telephone, therapy

Countries of Study


Types of Dementia

Dementia (general / unspecified)

Types of Study

Randomised Controlled Trial

Type of Outcomes

Carer Burden (instruments measuring burden), Carers’ Mental Health, Quality of Life of Carer


Extra Care Housing

Type of Interventions

Intervention for Carers

Carer Focussed Interventions