This week is Dementia Awareness week, an Alzheimer’s Society initiative aimed at raising awareness of the effects of Dementia on people’s lives.
The theme this year is #dosomethingnew in order to highlight that life doesn’t end with a dementia diagnosis.
“Dementia can happen to anyone and there’s currently no cure. It can strip you of your memory, your relationships and your connection to the world you love, leaving you feeling isolated and alone.
At Alzheimer’s Society, we believe that life doesn’t end when dementia begins, and we do everything we can to help people living with dementia hold onto their lives and the things they love for longer.
We also believe it’s possible to do new things and have new experiences, too. And that’s what this year’s Dementia Awareness Week is all about.”
My contribution to the week, is to announce the start of a series of summer evening Dementia Friends Information Sessions in the walled Gardens of Cannington. Starting on 7th June at 7 P.M. To find out more, please contact me firstname.lastname@example.org
To find out more about Dementia and Dementia Awareness week please visit the Alzheimers society website-
Some strong words and sobering facts in this article from the British Geriatric Society blog.
Residents of care homes have complex healthcare needs, reflecting multiple long-term conditions, significant disability and advanced frailty. Care provided to this complex cohort of people is often fragmented. Day to day care services are delivered to a variable standard often with high staff turnover and limited support from the wider health system.
I would like to know about the figures for admission compared to the general population. I think they need unpicking more to allow for the possible increased vigilance and potential risk aversion of care home staff. Both of which could contribute to the higher rates of admission.
It was lovely to hear from Hayleigh at the Walled Gardens tea rooms today, about how attending a Dementia Friends Information session that I had run had changed her families approach to visiting granddad who has Dementia.
Hayleigh attended the walled gardens staff session and had taken on board one of the messages in the Bookcase analogy. Her family had been in two minds about visiting. However after Hayleigh explained to them what she had learnt about the different parts of the brain, and seeing the person as more than their Dementia, they have started to visit more often.
Job Done! Nice one Hayleigh.
For those who haven’t attended a session, see the video below.
The Older People’s Commissioner for Wales, review into the quality of life and care for older people living in care homes, A Place To Call Home, says that many people living in care homes have an “unacceptable quality of life”
Care homes are seen as places of irreversible decline, by staff, relatives, residents and commissioners.
This is a worry for many of my clients, who dread moving into a home and wish to avoid it at all costs. Such a shame when good care is out there and will enhance people’s lives.
The commissioner in her introduction says:
When older people move into a care home, all they are
doing in effect is moving from one home to another. The
word ‘home’ should mean something special, a place that
we hope will be filled with friendship, love and laughter.
Sadly this isn’t the case for the majority in Wales, and the rest of the UK.
I’m sorry to have to report that it’s been a busy month for bad care stories.
The levels of poor care, abuse and neglect in homes across the country are worrying.
Fortunately I’m not alone in highlighting the issues, and sooner or later people will have to take action.
The most upsetting aspect for me is how avoidable most of the poor care is. Common themes emerge, and if good practice was shared and encouraged, things would be better all round. Sadly in our mostly privately run, for profit, elderly care system, sharing of good practice is seen as giving away trade secrets.
So if you are looking for good quality care always get help and advice.
UK Older People’s Day is on 1st October every year to coincide with the UN International Day of Older Persons. The main aim for the day is to be a celebration of the achievements and contributions that older people make to our society and the economy. Older People’s Day supports the campaign to challenge negative attitudes and outdated stereotypes.
You can help this year by signing up to our pledge of support organising an event or activity linked to one of our themed months or just by taking part in something going on in your community on October 1st. Nothing going on? Then make it happen!!
Kris Scotting Care Consultants Ltd has pledged to continue to campaign for the best quality care in later life.
The National Institute for Social Care and Clinical Excellence, have produced some very exhaustive guidance and tools for those caring for people with dementia.
Here’s how NICE describe it-
This resource is aimed at both care providers and carers focusing on the key messages from each quality statement relative to each audience. It provides links to key resources, further information, and practical tools which are again relative to carers and care providers as appropriate. The resource has been co-produced by the NICE Collaborating Centre for Social Care and key people in the social care sector.
AgeUK Somerset are holding a free one day conference on 26th October at Taunton Racecourse.
Their website says:
This conference will tackle the issues that matter most when it comes to ensuring a good quality of later life: housing, mutually-supportive relationships, retaining independence and control, enjoying an active lifestyle, health and social care services, living well with long-term conditions and much more. It will encourage us all to envisage and plan for how we want to live our later life.
Listen to a number of high-profile speakers, including:
Sir Andrew Dillon, CEO, National Institute for Health and Care Excellence
Professor Ann Bowling, Professor of Health Sciences, University of Southampton
Dr Chrystalina Antoniades, Department of Clinical Neurology, University of Oxford
Tony Watts, OBE, Chair of South West Forum on Ageing and Founding Editor of Mature Times
Conference Chair – Clinton Rogers, Somerset Correspondent for BBC Points West
To book online and for more details visit their website: