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North East Dementia Alliance

The North East Dementia Alliance is a partnership of health, social care, voluntary and private sector organisations. We work to drive up improvements in health and care, create dementia friendly communities and improve research. Key to the Alliance is involving people with dementia in every aspect of our work. The Alliance works to improve services around six key priorities: • - good quality early diagnosis • - improved quality of care in general hospitals • - living well with dementia in care homes • - reduction of the inappropriate prescribing of anti-psychotic medication • - development of dementia friendly communities • - improving care and support to people with dementia from minority communities.

11 May 2015
North East
Local Alliances:
North East Dementia 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?

There are significant overlaps between North East Dementia Alliances’ priorities and delivery programme and the seven outcomes.  This creates a significant fit between these aims and the North East Dementia Alliance’s current agenda.

The Alliance has a programme of work which delivers its priority objectives outlined above.

It works with partner organisations to:

Identify and share best practice – by horizon scanning and using the expertise of the members.  The Alliance also has an innovation programme which is being implemented and the findings are being shared across the region and nationally where appropriate.Ensure people living with dementia are included in the work of the Alliance and service design and delivery.  Recently commissioning a leadership course for people with dementia and their carers.Improve practice through provision of information and direct support e.g. the development of care homes project.Facilitate developments by organisations not previously engaged or who want to develop something which is innovative.


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

As NEDA is the strategic dementia alliance for the North East it is concerned with all the challenges dementia poses for the region.  In many cases these will be the regional dimensions of national challenges.  For example these include the ageing population, the projected increase in prevalence of dementia, and the ever changing landscape of health and social care.  Securing and allocating adequate funding for all dementia related activities is a challenge for the North East as elsewhere in the country and we are becoming increasingly conscious of the need to diversify services for people with dementia and their carers to reflect the needs of our increasingly diverse population.  Individual members of NEDA will have their own particular challenges in delivering services and we will work together as an Alliance to both tackle regional issues and support our members in making their own services relevant and accessible.

2. Actions

  • Development and delivery of a leadership course for people with dementia and their carers.

    Develop an innovative course for people living with dementia and their carers.  This will be based on research and using existing expertise in the Region linked to other service user leadership course.  This will be tested out via 2 cohorts of people. 


    2015 - First Quarter Update

    The North East Dementia Alliance commissioned a pilot programme aiming to empower people living with dementia and their carers to take control of their own care and support and influence service and policy development. The pilot programme, which has been developed by the North of England Mental Health Development Unit and Karen Picking & Associates, takes place over four sessions. The pilot programme aims to support people living with dementia and their carers to develop the confidence and skills to shape services as well as increasing understanding of available services and how to develop a well-being plan.Each person on the programme had their own learning objectives and was supported.


    The pilot’s first programme ran from May to July 2014 and the second October to December. This included over 35  people who were carers or people with dementia. Links are being made between participants and strategy groups so that participants can influence future services. A full evaluation of the programme will be published by May 2015.


  • Engaging the housing sector in the support and care of people with dementia.

    Hold an event in January 2014 in conjunction with the National Housing Federation.  Show case best practice and facilitate contact.  Develop appropriate actions from the event.


    2015 - First Quarter Update

    In 2013/14 the National Housing Federation worked closely with ADASS, health colleagues and other partners including the North East Dementia Alliance, and Voluntary Organisations North East to establish a working group to actively promote and support cross sector partnership working to transform dementia care in the region. Together they considered the potential for housing interventions to offer choice and control to people with dementia and their families across the north east. These discussions culminated in a one day conference held in Durham in January 2014. The event was funded through grants received from the Department of Health Strategic Partnership programme and the Think Local Act Personal (TLAP) sector-led improvement programme.  Full details of the event’s presentations and discussions can be found http://www.adass.org.uk/north-east-cross-sector-working/  Actions from the event will be carried forward in NEDAs work plan for 2015 this currently includes supporting progress of the Healthwise pilot[1]

    As part of the next work plan the Alliance will be looking at the National Housing Federation’s guide for commissioners (to be published in April 2015) showing how housing partners can help health and social care agencies to transform dementia care pathways.

    [1] Case Studies from Dementia 2014 – Debbie Smith and Peter Otter  http://www.ncl.ac.uk/ageing/innovation/engagement/neda.htm Ch East Perspective”

  • Promote the development of dementia friendly communities in the North East.

    Disseminate information about DFCs and progress working with Northern Rock Foundation using electronic network and web based materials.Publish newsletters specifically about DFC in the NE.

    Support including some financial support to identified DFC projects including dementia and spirituality. 


    2015 - First Quarter Update

    The Alliance worked closely with Northern Rock Foundation to develop a dementia friendly community web based resource.  The site provided reports and supporting materials.  A number of newsletters specifically relating to DFC were published.  In July 2014 NEDA commissioned and published, with support from NRF, Dementia 2014: A North East Perspective which takes each element of the Prime Minister’s Challenge, including DFC and describes:

    The demographic position in the North East of EnglandThe relevant English policy contextDementia research in the North East of EnglandThe status of dementia care in the North East of EnglandThe development of dementia friendly communities in the North East of EnglandAn overview of the work being undertaken to support people with dementia and their carers by the statutory, independent, voluntary and education sectors.


    The report explores options and ways to: ensure full shared decision-making with people with dementia, improve information sharing, focus on outcomes for people with dementia as the measure of success, develop a workforce which is equipped to meet the needs of people with dementia, adopt best practice, maximise resources to develop the right care and support for people living with dementia, develop more joined up working at both a service and planning level, and identify regional dementia priorities.


    The NEDA has taken the findings from the report to inform its objectives for the coming year. [1] 

    [1] Dementia 2014: A North East Perspective  – Debbie Smith and Peter Otter  section 18 http://www.ncl.ac.uk/ageing/innovation/engagement/neda.htm

  • Work with relevant organisations to ensure the concerts are properly promoted and reaching those most at risk of isolation

    We will work with a wide range of local partners to achieve this and we will build on existing services such as tea clubs, dementia-friendly cafes, and other dementia-friendly services.

  • Evaluation

    We will gather and collate feedback, and assess the impact of our concerts within this particular context to deepen our understanding of how our concerts in the community can help people living independently with dementia.

    Case study
  • Neasham Road Surgery

    To review our environment and consider how we can make it more dementia friendly.