Los Mejores Amigos en el Cuidado de Alzheimer

By Virginia Bell, M.S.W., and David Troxel, M.P.H.

ISBN 978-1-932529-39-5
340 pages
5 5/8″ x 8 1/2″ papercover
© 2008


2015 National Mature Media Awards Winner logo

Read the Los Mejores Amigos en el Cuidado de Alzheimer Press Release (Comunicado de prensa) in English or Spanish.

Now available in Spanish, The Best Friends Approach to Alzheimer’s Care is your guide to the groundbreaking and uplifting method for the care of people with Alzheimer’s disease. Discover the power of the essential elements of friendship: respect, empathy, support, trust, humor. These are the building blocks of a care model that’s both effective and flexible enough to adapt to each person’s remaining strengths and abilities. It’s easy. It’s natural. It works.

Learn how to ensure the highest quality of life for people with Alzheimer’s disease, not just by preventing catastrophic episodes but by making every day consistently reassuring, enjoyable, and secure.

This resource includes an introduction by Lilia Mendoza, founder of the Mexican Alzheimer’s Society.


Section I: About Alzheimer’s Disease

  1. The Experience of Alzheimer’s Disease
  2. Alzheimer’s Disease Basics
  3. Assessing Remaining Strengths and Abilities

Section II: The Best Friends Model of Care

  1. An Alzheimer’s Disease Bill of Rights
  2. The Art of Friendship
  3. The Life Story
  4. The “Knack” of Alzheimer’s Care

Section III: The Best Friends Model in Action

  1. The Best Friends Approach to Communication
  2. The Best Friends Approach to Activities
  3. The Best Friends Approach at Home
  4. The Best Friends Approach in Adult Day Services
  5. The Best Friends Approach in Long-Term Care Facilities

Section IV: The Best Friends Model: A New Day

  1. Being One’s Own Best Friend
  2. Light Out of the Darkness

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Virginia Bell, M.S.W., has lectured widely on Alzheimer’s disease at national and international conferences, speaking at 11 National Education Conferences of the Alzheimer’s Association and lecturing at the last 16 conferences of Alzheimer’s Disease International. She has published journal articles and book chapters, notably in Dementia Care: Patient, Family and Community (John Hopkins, 1989).

Many of her articles have been reprinted numerous times: “The Alzheimer’s Disease Bill of Rights” (1994), “The Other Face of Alzheimer’s Disease” (1999) and “Spirituality and the Person with Dementia” (2001), co-authored with David Troxel and published in the American Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease and in Alzheimer’s Care Quarterly. She has also co-authored four books with David Troxel, most notably The Best Friends Approach to Dementia Care.

Virginia is currently the Program Consultant for the Greater Kentucky and Southern Indiana Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. She received her M.S.W. from the University of Kentucky in 1982.

David Troxel, M.P.H., has become nationally and internationally known for his writing and teaching in the fields of Alzheimer’s disease and long-term care. He has co-authored four influential books (most notably, The Best Friends Approach to Dementia Care) on Alzheimer’s care as well as numerous articles relating to Alzheimer’s disease care and staff development and training.

His latest book on activities was published in 2004. David received his Master’s Degree in Public Health from UMDNJ, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School (formerly Rutgers Medical School) in 1986.

David is a past Executive Board member of the American Public Health Association and is a member of the Ethics Advisory Panel for the United States Alzheimer’s Association. He currently serves as a Program Consultant to the Alzheimer’s Association California Central Coast Chapter in Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties.


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