A 5-Year Alzheimer’s disease Follow-Up Study - ALSOVA

From monitoring care, use of health and social services and costs to the prediction of resources needed in care and the importance of Alzheimer's disease from the point of view of health economy

The members of the ALSOVA-research group, led by Professor Anne Koivisto, and the collaborators have strong expertise in their research areas from clinical Alzheimer’s disease, care and pharmacology to health economics.

Our major research interests are:

  • To monitor and determine measures for the progression of Alzheimer's disease (AD), quality of life, changes of care and medical therapy, the probability of institutionalization, and long-term costs of care within the standard health care system.
  • To determine the impacts of AD progression and the characteristics of caregivers on the use and costs of social and health care services.

Our aim in ALSOVA HE study is:

  • To develop a new, improved multifactorial AD cost-effectiveness model to predict the need for social and health services in relation to progression of AD.

Analyses will be carried out using the unique University of Eastern Finland (UEF) Neurology Department’s 5-year ALSOVA follow-up clinical and register data, consisting of 236 home-dwelling persons with AD and their caregivers. AD-targeted medication was recommended to be used. One third of the dyads participated in psychosocial rehabilitation (16 days in two years). Annual follow-ups were carried out by the study personnel. In all other respects, the study participants were treated in the standard health care. Health Economic analyses will be carried out combining the longitudinal (5-year) register and clinical data.

UEF (Neurology, Nursing Science, Psychology, Health and Social Management, Pharmacoeconomics and Outcome Research Units) and experts from Kuopio University Hospital (Neurology), as well as national and international collaborators, will work in close collaboration to improve care for patients with AD and well-being for their caregivers. 

This longitudinal 5-year study will help to develop the system for monitoring services and care to be more suitable and cost-effective for persons with a memory disorder, their family members, and society. The study will produce a new, more realistic multifactorial model to predict the disease course as well as the needed resources.

Our study aims and the expected results support the objectives of the National Memory Disorder Program (Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, STM 2012) and are in line with Academy and Horizon 2020 research objectives to improve wellbeing of aged citizens.