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Elm Surgery

Medium sized surgery with 6,200 patients and 22 staff members. We are friendly, approachable and willing to help.

30 July 2018
Local Alliances:
Plymouth 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?

We had a development afternoon in our surgery-Claire Puckey (Dementia Friendly City Coordinator, Plymouth City Council) came in and gave us a talk on Dementia which we found very helpful as it gave us a greater understanding of it.

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

We would like to promote our surgery as a dementia friendly one and would like to have our environment reviewed to ensure it is as dementia friendly as possible.

Member website


2. Actions

  • To improve awareness of dementia across the whole team (both clinical and non-clinical) and extend to the Patient Participation Group and surgery patients.

    • All front-line staff including: administrators, receptionists, practice manager, GP's, nurses etc to attend a dementia awareness session.
    • Display relevant dementia-related literature and posters in the waiting areas in the surgery.
    • Use technology to help raise awareness (i.e. include information about dementia/symptoms and invite patients to attend for screening to establish early diagnosis) on the surgery website and electronic display screen.
  • Ensure that clinicians are appropriately trained with the latest guidelines.

    The surgery will identify any gaps in the clinical staff's knowledge about dementia and specialist training input from a local older person's mental health consultant on e.g. the latest guidelines on identifying dementia, initiating treatment etc will be arranged via Claire Puckey (Dementia Friendly City Coordinator, Plymouth City Council) and Rachel Silcock (Strategic Commissioning Manager, Plymouth City Council).

  • To ensure that the surgery environment is dementia friendly.

    Withe the support of Claire Puckey (Dementia Friendly City Coordinator, Plymouth City Council), a member of staff will do a a walk round the surgery to look at how the environment could be improved e.g. with signage changes, to ensure that it is as easy as possible for patients with dementia to access and all agreed actions to be implemented.

  • Identify patients with dementia and their carers, flag on surgery systems and ensure all staff are aware.

    • Highlight patients with dementia and their carers on the surgery computer system.
    • Keep an up to date list of vulnerable patients and their carers.
    • Prioritise appointments and telephone conversations for patients with dementia  and their carers e.g. offer appointments at a time to suit the patient and carer (always offer later ones so that a telephone reminder service can be provided on the day and also offer double appointments if needed).
  • Improve the level of support offered to patients with dementia andf their carers.

    • Ensure that all patients with dementia and their carers are made aware of local services that they can gain support from e.g. Alzheimer's Society, Caring for Carers, Age UK Plymouth etc.
    • Consider offering patients with a diagnosis of dementia and their carers, appointments with a Dementia Support Worker based in an available meeting room within the surgery, to enable them to have ease of access to practical and emotional support on a half day per month.
    • Encourage and promote discussion on advanced care planning (ACP) to prevent future crises (patients with dementia have a time-limited opportunity to make ACP decisions regarding financial and health and welfare matters).
  • Review surgery HR policies.

    • Look at how we can support staff members if they are needed to support any family members with dementia.
    • Look at how we could support staff members that may be diagnosed with dementia to remain in work safely for as long as possible.