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Dementia risk reduction in primary care: The HAPPI MIND study – 2022 QI project for general practice

In 2020, there was an estimated 459,000 Australians living with dementia and this number is expected to increase to more than one million Australians by 2058. While there is currently no cure for dementia, the recent Lancet 2020 commission report highlighted that addressing modifiable risk factors for dementia may delay or prevent up to 40% of cases. Many of the modifiable risk factors are present in mid-life.

In 2022, there are an estimated 487,500 Australians living with dementia.

North Western Melbourne Primary Health Network (NWMHN) has partnered with Monash University to support practices to participate in a randomised control research trial, led by Monash University. This trial offers practices an opportunity to implement one of two new primary care-based interventions for assessing dementia risk and reducing dementia risk factors in middle aged adults (aged 45 – 65 years).

Primary care is an ideal setting for the implementation of dementia prevention programs in Australia. In this setting, middle-aged adults with high risk of developing dementia (such as those with cardiovascular risk factors, diabetes, depression, obesity, nicotine dependence) can be identified early, and targeted education, management and referrals can be organised.

The Holistic Approach in Primary Care for Preventing Memory Impairment and Dementia (HAPPI MIND) study aims to evaluate the effectiveness of two different interventions for assessing dementia risk and reducing dementia risk factors in middle-aged adults in the primary care setting.

Recruitment is open for practices to join the project. Visit our EOI page to apply.


What’s involved

  • Recruited primary care clinics will be allocated to deliver one of two interventions
  • Monash University will train practice nurses to deliver their allocated interventios
  • Practices will receive remuneration to cover staff time required to recruit participants, perform data collection and deliver the intervention, through an agreement with Monash University
  • Practices will follow-up with patients at a minimum of annually for three years.

Benefits for your patients

  • Individualised assessment of dementia risk to inform health care management
  • Education on dementia and risk factors for dementia
  • Enhanced patient-clinic relationships in management of chronic conditions.

Benefits for your practice

  • Practice nurse(s) trained to identify health conditions and behaviours in middle-aged adults that may act as risk factors for dementia
  • Practice nurse(s) trained to deliver the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA)
  • Resources and/or training to educate patients on dementia and risk factors for dementia
  • Remuneration of up to $13,500 or $32,500, depending on intervention delivered*
  • Potential to improve the health behaviours and health of your patients
  • Opportunity to share, network and connect with other practices involved in the project
  • Receive tailored practice support from NWMPHN and the Monash University study team.

*Dependent on number of patients recruited and completion of trial milestones

Project resources

A Pen CAT4 recipe has been developed for interested practices to use:  

HealthPathways Melbourne provides clinical advice and easy-to-follow information about referral services. If you do not have access to HealthPathways, please contact