Support In Dementia

Support In Dementia provides dementia specialist support and improvement for health and social care

10 February 2016
Care, Health, Housing Sector

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?

Support in Dementia works with a range of provider organisations from the statutory, private, independent and voluntary sectors and specialise in providing meaningful and engaging approaches to staff development and service improvement. We believe that the day to day lives of people living with dementia should be as positive as possible; that there can an improved experience for people with dementia wherever they are: at home, in hospital, in a care home, in the library, in the bank or on the bus ... ; that family carers, paid workers, friends and members of the community, should feel able to build relationships with people with dementia; that by engaging with people with dementia and their families, we can learn how best to support and value them. All our activities ensure an approach that is experience led, enabling, inspiring, creative and diverse. We work alongside individuals and organisations to help them better understand the needs of people with dementia, by offering programmes of education and training, project management, and service evaluation and improvement. Our approach is based on current best practice evidence and is underpinned by the priorities of the national dementia strategy.

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

  1. Whilst there is a national focus on the importance of improved dementia knowledge and awareness the challenge for our organisation is in encouraging commissioners to value and invest in specialist face to face training solutions that better support and enable the workforce to deliver quality dementia care.
  2. People with dementia have not traditionally been partners in the day to day decision making processes that impact their quality of life. The Mental Capacity Act, an enabling piece of legislation that supports informed decision making, is frequently misunderstood or not applied by all those involved in providing health and social care to people with dementia. The challenge for our organisation is to support the workforce in appreciating it value and recognising it's application. 

Member website

2. Actions

  • Partnerships

    Develop partnerships with providers of health and social care, in order to develop and deliver bespoke programmes of dementia specialist education and training.

    Being implemented

    2015 - First Quarter Update

    During the last 6 months Support In Dementia has worked with the following organisations to design and deliver programmes of dementia specialist education and training:

    Brighton and Hove City Council, London Borough of Richmond Upon Thames, Essex County Council, Jewish Care, The Martlet’s Hospice, BS Social Care, Autumn Lodge - East Sussex, Whittington Health -  London, Excelcare Care, EastThames Homes,TLC Care, Kingsley Healthcare, A1 Homecare, Maybo

    Support In Dementia continues to identify partnerships with providers of health and social care in order to develop and deliver programmes of dementia specialist education and training.

    Additionally Support in Dementia has contributed to the work of the following organisations:

    Dementia Expert Advisory Group (formerly Workforce Advisory Group), SCIE dementia advisory group,  The College of Social Work Social in particular during the creation of the ‘Work with Dementia’, learning resources, The European Network on the Training in the Management of Aggression (ENTMA), presenting at their annual symposium in Dublin in 2014.

  • Funding

    Identify funding streams to support the design and delivery of training programmes on the mental capacity act for the dementia care workforce.

    Being implemented

    2015 - First Quarter Update

    Support In Dementia obtained funding from the Department of Health’s Workforce Advisory Group to deliver a programme of training the aim of which was to improve the knowledge of staff in social care around the Mental Capacity Act.  The pilot project which has been run in Brighton and Chelmsford, is due for completion in April 2015.  An evaluation report, written by the Mental Health Foundation will be publicly available in due course.  Support In Dementia continues to identify funding streams to support the awareness raising of staff in health and social care settings on Mental Capacity Act, DOLS, Safeguarding and the Care Act. 

  • Resources

    Develop training resources in support of training delivery to acute hospital staff in line with Health Education England's mandate (Tier 2).

    Being implemented

    2015 - First Quarter Update

    Support In Dementia were commissioned by UCL Partners, (which was set up as part of a collaboration between Health Education North Central and East London (HENCEL), UCL Partners, 16 Acute NHS Trusts and 11 CCGs to increase understanding, recognition and awareness of Dementia through training staff in Dementia Awareness Tier 1), to create a set of training materials for use in acute settings aimed at staff who wish to gain more specialist knowledge in dementia.  Using the London Strategic Clinical Networks ‘Guide to Dementia Training for Health and Social Care Staff in London’, nine subject areas were identified and Tier 2 training resources were created for staff in general health care settings who are in regular contact with people with dementia. The training would also be seen as a starting point for staff who will develop more specialist knowledge. The resources for each subject area comprised a teaching plan, supporting powerpoint presentation, exercises for use during the training and information sheets.  Each session included extracts from Barbara’s Story, a series of short films created by Guys and St Thomas’ with support from the Burdett Trust for Nursing, about the experience of an elderly patient throughout her interaction with healthcare services The films support a better understanding of the progressive symptoms of dementia and how these can be addressed, and help staff to see the impact they can have on a patients experience.

    Support in Dementia has been further commissioned to deliver and evaluate the training resources, measuring in particular how staff have reacted to the training, and whether as a result of the training their confidence and attitudes towards caring for a person with dementia have changed.