Waterloo, Ont. – A new study exploring the cost-effectiveness analysis of MINT Memory Clinics found net cost savings of $51,500 per patient as compared to those in Ontario without the service, with improvement in quality of life for those living with dementia.
The MINT Memory Clinic approach is the realization of Dr. Linda Lee, founder and Executive Director of MINT Memory Clinic and Schlegel Chair in Primary Care for Elders at the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging (RIA). The model has grown to more than 100 clinics across Ontario and has the potential to profoundly impact Ontario’s health care system at a time when it is needed most.
MINT (multispecialty, interprofessional team) clinics integrate assessment, treatment planning, and links to community supports – all under one roof. Patients are supported by a diverse team of clinicians, including family physicians, nurses, pharmacists, social workers, and occupational therapists, all of whom are trained to specialize in dementia and memory changes.
A third-party evaluation commissioned by the Government of Ontario in 2019 found that MINT Memory Clinic care was associated with reduced wait times to access dementia care by 50% and significant dementia-related cost savings for the Ontario health care system, including:
- A 50% reduction in emergency department costs;
- A 55% reduction in inpatient hospital costs;
- A 20% reduction in long-term care costs, and
- A 38% reduction in health care costs per day for people receiving dementia care.
About MINT Memory Clinics
MINT Memory Clinic is a non-profit organization dedicated to enabling delivery of better dementia care in primary care through standardized nationally-accredited training. The MINT (multispecialty, interprofessional team) Memory Clinic model was developed in 2006 under Dr. Lee’s leadership at the Centre for Family Medicine Family Health Team in Kitchener. Since that time, the growth of Dr. Lee’s model has been supported by the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging and many other organizations, including the Ontario Brain Institute, Alzheimer’s Society Ontario, and the Cowan Foundation. The clinic model has been replicated in many diverse settings. Today, there are more than 100 MINT Memory Clinics operating across Canada.
About the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging
The Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging (RIA) is a charitable, non-profit organization dedicated to enhancing the quality of life and care of older adults. The RIA tackles some of the biggest issues facing an aging population by driving research and innovation to improve education and practice. The RIA develops and shares solutions that make a difference to benefit older adults everywhere. Learn more at www.the-ria.ca.
The status-quo cannot meet the needs of our aging population. MINT Memory Clinics will allow us to build a system that will save money, reduce the pressures on the health-care system and improve quality of life. Everyone’s journey with memory changes or dementia is different. With MINT Memory Clinics, we can deliver individualized care that addresses each patient’s unique needs, while also supporting care partners..
— Dr. Linda Lee, Schlegel Chair in Primary Care for Elders at the Schlegel-UW Research Institute for Aging (RIA) and associate clinical professor at McMaster University.
MINT Memory Clinics are a solution to help address our strained health-care system and the barriers facing people living with dementia and their families. All that’s needed is consistent government funding and support to enable them. These primary care led-clinics can be implemented quickly, and effectively deliver better patient, provider and system outcomes.
— Dr. Samir Sinha, director of health policy research at the National Institute on Ageing and the director of geriatrics at Sinai Health and the University Health Network.