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The effects of exposure to scenarios about dementia on stigma and attitudes toward dementia care in a Chinese community


Cheng, Sheung-Tak, Lam, Linda C. W., Chan, Liliane C. K., Law, Alexander C. B., Fung, Ada W. T., Chan, Wai-chi, Tam, Cindy W. C., Chan, Wai-man


International Psychogeriatrics / IPA, Volume: 23, No.: 9, Pages.: 1433-1441

Year of Publication



Background: This study investigated whether brief exposure to information has any effect on stigmatizing attitudes towards older people with dementia, and how people responded to this medical diagnosis.; Methods: 494 adults were randomly assigned to three groups differentiated by experimental conditions. Group A (control) responded to questions on stigma directly. Group B (symptom) read two vignettes that described the symptoms of two fictitious individuals with dementia, before answering questions on stigma. Group C (label) read the same vignettes which ended with a statement that the person was recently diagnosed with dementia by a physician. Data were analyzed with ANOVA, together with other pre-existing between-subjects factors.; Results: Brief exposure to information about dementia led to a statistically significant reduction in stigma (Groups B, C < A), regardless of whether the diagnostic label of "dementia" was included or not. Moreover, lower stigma was reported by persons who knew a relative or friend with dementia, who were younger and more educated, and who thought dementia was treatable.; Conclusions: As stigmatizing attitudes toward dementia are still a hindrance to early help-seeking in Asian communities, the findings suggest that community education may play a useful role in alleviating this barrier to early detection and intervention.;

Bibtex Citation

@article{Cheng_2011, doi = {10.1017/s1041610211000834}, url = {}, year = 2011, month = {may}, publisher = {Cambridge University Press ({CUP})}, volume = {23}, number = {09}, pages = {1433--1441}, author = {Sheung-Tak Cheng and Linda C. W. Lam and Liliane C. K. Chan and Alexander C. B. Law and Ada W. T. Fung and Wai-chi Chan and Cindy W. C. Tam and Wai-man Chan}, title = {The effects of exposure to scenarios about dementia on stigma and attitudes toward dementia care in a Chinese community}, journal = {Int. Psychogeriatr.} }


attitude to health, china, dementia, female, health education, humans, male, middle aged, psychology, stereotyping, stigma, therapy

Countries of Study

Hong Kong

Types of Dementia

Dementia (general / unspecified)

Types of Study

Randomised Controlled Trial

Type of Outcomes




Type of Interventions

Stigma reduction / dementia awareness campaigns

Awareness Interventions

Public dementia awareness campaigns