Abstract

Importance: Informal caregivers often receive limited training and support, especially in providing assistance with toileting, a physically and emotionally demanding activity of daily living. This increases caregivers’ risk for physical injury and burnout and jeopardizes older adults’ ability to age in place.

Objective: To assess the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary efficacy of a toileting intervention using an automated bidet to reduce the amount of physical assistance required from caregivers.

Design: Randomized wait-list control feasibility study.

Setting: Caregiver’s home.

Participants: Ten informal caregivers.

Intervention: An occupational therapy intervention to educate and train caregiving dyads to use an automated bidet system.

Outcomes and Measures: Feasibility was measured in terms of recruitment and retention, bidet installation, ability to operate the bidet, acceptability (a process evaluation), preliminary efficacy (physical barriers and impact on caregiver outcomes of performance, satisfaction, and self-efficacy), and adverse events.

Results: All bidets were installed successfully. All caregivers reported that the intervention made toileting easier and increased their confidence. Physical barriers decreased for the treatment group. The bidet had a large effect on self-efficacy for the treatment group.

Conclusions and Relevance: The results suggest that the automated bidet intervention is feasible and acceptable and can have a positive impact on caregiver outcomes when assisting with toileting.

What This Article Adds: A toileting intervention using an automated bidet is feasible and acceptable for caregivers of older adults and can reduce the amount of physical assistance required from caregivers.

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