About the NYUCI

The NYUCI family counseling program was developed to help spouses or partners of people with dementia who are living together at home. The goal is to help the primary caregiver--the spouse or partner--by involving family members in mutual support. The program includes individual counseling, family counseling, and ongoing telephone counseling as needed.
Throughout the United States and internationally, counselors, social workers, therapists, psychologists and other professionals have sought NYUCI training and certification so they could bring this unique and demonstrably effective intervention to spouse and partner caregivers in person. By making the NYUCI available via telehealth technology, the hope is that many more people around the world will provide and receive its benefits.

Program Overview

The New York University Caregiver Intervention (NYUCI) is an award-winning program developed for people caring for a spouse or partner with dementia and their family members. Until now, the NYUCI has only been available in person. However, technology now makes it possible to get the benefits of this program via the internet at any place and time that is convenient for the counselors and family members.

The NYUCI is a 6-session counseling program that evolved from the experience of clinicians at New York University School of Medicine. The NYUCI was evaluated in a 20-year randomized, controlled trial funded by the National Institutes of Health. The study found that caregivers who participated in the NYUCI experienced many benefits—including fewer symptoms of depression and stress, as well as better physical health—compared with those who did not participate. They also reported increased satisfaction with the emotional and practical support they received, as well as increased closeness to their families. As a result of the program, many caregivers were able to postpone or avoid placing their spouses in residential care.

The NYUCI is unique, and is recognized nationally and internationally by such organizations as the US Administration on Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease International.

Now available online

John Hobday, founder of Health Care Interactive (HCI), is the developer of the CARES dementia online training program for family members and professional caregivers. Mr. Hobday, Mary S. Mittelman, DrPh, developer of the NYUCI, and Cynthia Epstein, LCSW, senior clinical social worker and implementer of the NYUCI, collaborated to bring the NYUCI to you online, using telehealth technology. The team has a long history of creating programs to help caregivers and people with dementia, and continue to develop innovative and practical strategies to enhance the lives of those coping with this illness. Learn more about the founders here.

Hear from the Creator of NYUCI




Video: Overview of NYUCI

Watch this overview of the NYUCI to learn why and how it was developed, and how it helps caregivers and families.


NYUCI Telehealth in Action Video

Watch this video to see a counselor, caregiver and family member participating in an online session.



John Hobday founded Health Care International (HCI) in 1997 with the mission of providing comprehensive Web-based educational information and self-management tools to both the general public and professionals. HCI’s interactive Web-based educational sites, DVDs, and CD-ROMs have been sold worldwide and currently are in use in the United States, Canada, Europe, Brazil, and Japan. HCI has been the recipient of multiple Alzheimer’s- and dementia-related grants from the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute on Aging, the National Institute of Mental Health, and the National Institute of Nursing Research. HCI has collaborated with many acclaimed Alzheimer’s and dementia researchers at the national office of the Alzheimer’s Association, the US Department of Veteran Affairs, the University of Minnesota, New York University, Duke University, Emory University and the University of Iowa.

Mary S. Mittelman, DrPh, is an epidemiologist who has been evaluating psychosocial interventions for people with cognitive impairment and their family members for more than two decades, and is a frequent speaker at conferences for researchers, healthcare professionals and caregivers. She developed the NYUCI and for more than 20 years was principal investigator of a study of the program, which was first funded by the NIH in 1987. Results of the NYUCI study have been published widely in professional journals such as the Journal of the American Medical Association and the Gerontologist. The NYUCI also has won many awards, including an award from the National Alliance for Caregiving and the Met Life Foundation and the first global award for Alzheimer’s psychosocial research from Alzheimer’s Disease International/Fondation Mederic Alzheimer. Other awards include the annual New York City Family Caregiver Coalition award in 2009, the Maggie Kuhn Award from Presbyterian Senior Services and the Rosalynn Carter Caregiver Leadership Award.

Cynthia Epstein, LCSW, is a clinical social worker with many years’ experience working with older adults and their families at NYU. She has taught many mental-health professionals about the clinical aspects of the NYUCI, and is a co-author, with Dr. Mittelman, of three books for healthcare professionals and caregivers. She also maintains a private psychotherapy practice in New York City. Mr. Hobday, Dr. Mittelman and Ms. Epstein have worked together on every step of this program, to make sure that it is evidence-based, clinically sound and user-friendly for people with all levels of internet experience and caregiving challenges.