During the COVID-19 pandemic, memory clinics had to rapidly transform services in order to meet the needs of patients while attending to infection control concerns. This study considered the experiences of delivering and receiving a dementia diagnosis during this time.  The findings highlight what is important to the person with dementia and their family and provide lessons from the pandemic for future practice.   


This study was co-produced by “BUDDs” (Better Understanding Dementia Diagnosis).  This Group is made up of people with lived experience of dementia and researchers.  The co-productive approach allowed for the personal knowledge and understanding of living with dementia, to enrich the research process and outcome.  BUDDs met regularly throughout the project using an online platform to work together on the planning, analysis and reporting of the study. 


Read the at a glance guide

Understanding dementia diagnosis during the Covid-19 pandemic - full report



The animation below explains the findings of the research

In this second animation, we explain our findings to healthcare professionals.



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This six-part series explores the assessment and diagnosis of dementia, and telephone and digital assessment introduced during the Covid-19 pandemic. We also discuss the research aiming to better understand the perspectives of both the person receiving a diagnosis and healthcare professionals through exploring the emotional, practical and ethical impacts of the changes.

This series is co-produced with the BUDDs (Better Understanding Dementia Diagnosis) lived experience stakeholder advisory group & researchers at Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Research Centre & Edinburgh Centre for Research on the Experience of Dementia (ECRED).

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BBC News Scotland

(29th September 2022)

The Herald Scotland

(2nd October 2022)



Kinnaird, L., Russ. T. (2021). Understanding dementia diagnosis during Covid-19, in The Old Age Psychiatrist Old Age Psychiatry Faculty Newsletter. [online] pp.40–41. Available at:

Munro, D., Kinnaird, L., Russ, T., Gambier-Ross, K., Wilkinson, H. and Vincent, R. (2021). Sharing the diagnosis of dementia in the post-COVID-19 clinic: patient and practitioner perspectives: dementia assessment and diagnosis during lockdown. World Alzheimer Report 2021 Journey through the diagnosis of dementia. [online] Alzheimer’s Disease International, pp.182–184. Available at:


The Team

Dr Tom Russ (ASDRC Director): Principal Investigator

Professor Heather Wilkinson (Director of ECRED) : Co-Principal Investigator

Lindsay Kinnaird: Research Assistant

Rosalie Ashworth: Post-doctoral Research Assistant 

Denise Munro: Patient and Public Involvement (PPI) Coordinator 


For more information, please contact Lindsay Kinnaird:


This research project is funded by Economic and Social Research Council as part of the UKRI's Rapid Response to Covid.

Sponsors - ASDRC, ECRED & ESRC