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Shropshire Council

Shropshire’s local authority, providing services to over 300,000 people.

Updated:
7 July 2015
Location:
West Midlands
Sectors:
Local Authorities
Local Alliances:
Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Dementia Action Alliance

1. Action Plan

1. The National Dementia Declaration lists seven outcomes that the DAA are seeking to achieve for people with dementia and their carers. How would you describe your organisation’s role in delivering better outcomes for people with dementia and their carers?

Shropshire Council has an integral role to play in ensuring better outcomes for local people with dementia. Our county has an elderly population, with 1 in 4 residents aged 65 or above. We recognise that Shropshire is particularly susceptible to the impact of dementia. By joining the Shropshire Dementia Action Alliance, we hope to respond proactively to the condition and work with other like-minded organisations to improve the quality of life for those affected by it.

Our vision is to make Shropshire a county in which people with dementia can live well and continue to be active and independent members of their community even after diagnosis.

Our organisation will deliver better outcomes for people with dementia - and their carers - by raising awareness of the condition and its day-to-day effects. By ensuring that local residents and Council staff have an increased understanding of dementia, we hope to reduce the stigma and feelings of isolation which can sometimes accompany a diagnosis. We want to promote empathy - just because a person has been diagnosed with dementia doesn’t mean they should suddenly stop doing the things they have always done.

We will look to create an environment in which people affected by dementia feel empowered to seek help early on and can access post-diagnosis support/services with ease. We will work closely with the appropriate partners to make this a reality.

2.  What are the challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?

We face several challenges to delivering these outcomes for people affected by dementia - the most obvious difficulty being funding restraints.

One challenge will be a growing demand for our services due to an expanding elderly population and the increased number of people being diagnosed with dementia. We will have to ensure that our services have the capacity to meet such a demand without compromising on quality.

It will also be challenging to tackle existing preconceptions of how people with dementia can live their lives. The common belief that noticeable memory loss is just a normal part of the aging process needs to be challenged in order to ensure an early diagnosis (and treatment) of dementia.

Perhaps the biggest single challenge we face as an organisation is translating the concept of ‘Dementia Friendly Communities’ into practical, tangible solutions which make a positive difference to the lives of those affected by dementia. In order to do this, we will need to establish and maintain effective partnership working at a time of financial challenges.

2. Actions

  • Support the emergence of Shropshire-based ‘Dementia Friendly Communities’

    Translate the concept of ‘Dementia Friendly Communities’ into practical measures to improve the lives of local people affected by dementia We will assist and encourage local communities to organise workshops to explore and discuss how Shropshire can become a better place for those with dementia, and their families/carers

    Status:
    Delivery

    2015 - First Quarter Update

    Shropshire Council is a member of the Shropshire Dementia Action Alliance (DAA) and Health Economy Dementia Steering Group and continues to encourage and support the development of dementia friendly communities through the local DAA and workstreams developed through the current Dementia Strategy and Action Plan, 2014-16.

  • Raise awareness of access to diagnosis and the post-diagnosis support available to those with dementia and their families

    It is very important that people with dementia receive an early diagnosis and are made aware of the post-diagnosis support available to them. An early diagnosis allows those affected to understand their situation and to access treatments which could potentially relieve symptoms and improve quality of life We want to publicise how Shropshire residents can access an initial dementia diagnosis and highlight the benefits which may accompany it, e.g. the prescription of appropriate medication and the ability for those affected to plan for the future In order to raise awareness of post-diagnosis services, we will create an online directory to signpost those affected by dementia to available local support. By doing this, we hope to alleviate some of the concerns and questions many have after receiving a diagnosis

    Status:
    Delivery

    2015 - First Quarter Update

    Shropshire Council's First Point of Contact (FPOC) signposts people to local dementia support services, FPOC now use the local dementia web prescription as a directory to assist signposting.

    Shropshire Council are supporting the development of the Shropshire Dementia Roadmap.

  • Increase the number of ‘Dementia Friends Champions’ within Shropshire Council

    Currently there are only a handful of Shropshire Council staff who have been certified as ‘Dementia Friends Champions’. We want to increase this number as this will ensure that our organisation has the capacity to extend ‘Dementia Friends’ information sessions to as many council staff as possible

    Status:
    Delivery

    2015 - First Quarter Update

    Shropshire Council staff enouarged to become a 'Dementia Friends Champion'.

  • Encourage all Shropshire Council staff to complete a ‘Dementia Friends’ information session - including those who work in customer-facing roles and those who do not

    We want Shropshire Council staff – those who are employed in front-facing positions and even those who are not – to become ‘Dementia Friends’ It is a commitment of the corporate leadership team and senior management to cascade these information sessions to as many departments and staff as possible. This will facilitate a Council-wide awareness of the condition We are aware that it might not be possible for every single Shropshire Council employee to become a ‘Dementia Friend’ - but we will encourage all staff, regardless of the nature of their role, to take one hour out of their day and increase their awareness of dementia

    Status:
    Delivery

    2015 - First Quarter Update

    Delivery of 'Dementia Friends' information sessions to council staff.