Connecting research discovery with care delivery in dementia: The development of the Indianapolis Discovery Network for Dementia

Malaz A. Boustani, Amie Frame, Stephanie Munger, Patrick Healey, Jessie Westlund, Martin Farlow, Ann Hake, Mary Guerriero Austrom, Polly Shepard, Corby Bubp, Jose Azar, Arif Nazir, Nadia Adams, Noll L. Campbell, Azita Chehresa, Paul Dexter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations


Background: The US Institute of Medicine has recommended an integrated, locally sensitive collaboration among the various members of the community, health care systems, and research organizations to improve dementia care and dementia research. Methods: Using complex adaptive system theory and reflective adaptive process, we developed a professional network called the "Indianapolis Discovery Network for Dementia" (IDND). The IDND facilitates effective and sustainable interactions among a local and diverse group of dementia researchers, clinical providers, and community advocates interested in improving care for dementia patients in Indianapolis, Indiana. Results: The IDND was established in February 2006 and now includes more than 250 members from more than 30 local (central Indiana) organizations representing 20 disciplines. The network uses two types of communication to connect its members. The first is a 2-hour face-to-face bimonthly meeting open to all members. The second is a web-based resource center ( To date, the network has: (1) accomplished the development of a network website with an annual average of 12,711 hits per day; (2) produced clinical tools such as the Healthy Aging Brain Care Monitor and the Anticholinergic Cognitive Burden Scale; (3) translated and implemented the collaborative dementia care model into two local health care systems; (4) created web-based tracking software, the Enhanced Medical Record for Aging Brain Care (eMR-ABC), to support care coordination for patients with dementia; (5) received more than USD$24 million in funding for members for dementia-related research studies; and (6) adopted a new group-based problem-solving process called the "IDND consultancy round." Conclusion: A local interdisciplinary "think-tank" network focused on dementia that promotes collaboration in research projects, educational initiatives, and quality improvement efforts that meet the local research, clinical, and community needs relevant to dementia care has been built.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)509-516
Number of pages8
JournalClinical interventions in aging
StatePublished - Nov 15 2012


  • Cognitive impairment
  • Community research
  • Complex adaptive system
  • Translational research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology

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