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Recent Research

A Study on Spatial Planning for Residential Units at Long-term Dementia Care Facilities


Commissioned by Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taiwan
Alzheimer's Disease Association has spent nearly two years on surveying
and estimating the dementia epidemic nationwide. In 2012, there were
140,408 people over 65 years old suffering from dementia (mild or more
serious), satisfying the current disabilities criteria, and requiring
assistance in daily life. The social cost derived from taking care of
seniors with dementia will be very heavy for younger generations to bear.
People diagnosed with dementia can still have a long life expectancy,
and with appropriate supportive service, many dementia patients can
continue to stay in communities, maintain a good living standard, and
make contribution to the society.
The study analyzed the condition of barrier-free environment of
long-term dementia care facilities for seniors and reviewed relevant laws,
regulations, and government inspection criteria before proposing areas
requiring correction. After reviewing relevant domestic and international
studies as well as government policies and measures, the authors
provided principles for improving the residential environment for seniors
with dementia. The authors proposed that the basic barrier-free standards
for these facilities should be raised and drafted basic design guidelines
for relevant government authorities to refer to. The authors also
presented some concrete, feasible, integrated directions and principles
that can be used by relevant government departments on revising the
laws and acts as well as planning relating strategies.
The conclusions are presented below.
1. To enhance the overall service standard of these facilities and to
improve the quality of the environment, it is important to collect relevant
cases for the executive agency of welfare facilities to refer to.
2. To protect the rights of seniors, to help senior welfare facilities
develop their business and adopt good operation managerial concepts,
and to improve service quality of these facilities, relevant government
departments should encourage welfare facilities and groups to adopt
mechanisms for improving the environment as well as supporting
3. The current laws and acts regulating the environment of dementia
care units in Taiwan as well as the standards on environment and
facilities and safety maintenance used in welfare facility evaluation are
focused on the spatial aspect; there are little or no evaluation criteria on
the quality aspect. Consequently, the evaluation has a poor
discriminability. It is very important to establish a set of evaluation
criteria with a good discriminability.
The authors offered the following suggestions.
Suggestion 1
For the project about incorporating smart devices into the space of
senior welfare facilities, it will be included into the cross-year step-wise
plan of our Holistic Living Environment Technology Development:
Medium Term Plan.
Authority Institution:: Architecture and Building Research Institute
Suggestion 2
The third suggestion is to set up spatial planning standards for
residential units at long-term dementia care facilities to help relevant
departments draft their reference manual.
Authority Institution: Architecture and Building Research Institute
Cosponsor: Social and Family Affairs Administration
Suggestion 3
According to Item 3 of environmental facilities and safety
maintenance of Article 5 of senior welfare facilities evaluation items of
Evaluating and Rewarding Enforcement for Senior Citizens' Social
Welfare, government authorities should include qualitative evaluation
criteria: Medium/long term suggestions
Authority Institution: Social and Family Affairs Administration
Cosponsor: Architecture and Building Research Institute.