OBJECTIVE:To explore programs and information provided to caregivers of inpatients with dementia to assist with readiness to provide care following discharge. METHODS:A mixed-methods systematic review with meta-analysis was conducted. Search terms included dementia, inpatient, caregiver, anxiety, discharge and counselling. RESULTS:The search yielded 1938 studies (six databases), 13 met the inclusion criteria. Meta-analysis showed no statistically significant changes in anxiety, depression, burden or quality of life 3 months postintervention. Three emergent qualitative themes for staff consideration were: understanding personal characteristics of both patient and caregiver; presenting an inclusive organisational culture; and providing appropriate information at all stages of admission. A Model of Caregiver Readiness was created from the qualitative results. CONCLUSION:The programs did not significantly decrease the outcomes measured. However, caregivers identified that inclusion at all stages during hospital admission was a vital factor to reduce stress and increase caregiver readiness.