Handle with care - from the heart

24 Jul 2015 9:12 PMDPT DPT

Know the key points of the workshop called the Dementia Essentials Forum run by the Dementia Training Studies Centre. Learn more.

I recently attended a workshop called the Dementia Essentials Forum run by the Dementia Training Studies Centre. There were many great speakers who gave excellent examples of studies and practices happening in hospitals and Aged Care Facilities (ACF) that are working to create a calm environment for the patients, staff and families.

Here are a few key points from the workshop.

The percentage of People with Dementia (PwD) of different types and stages in ACF’s is 50%-70%. Much higher than reported as many PwD are not diagnosed officially for years so enter ACF’s at later stages.

Queensland has the highest rate of PwD outside a capital city of any state in Australia. There are more PwD in regional Queensland than Brisbane. A challenge for regional services.

Physical changes in the brain from Alzheimers disease, means that the brain neurons is like a tangle of knots so messages can’t get through. The neural pathways connections in the brain of a non-Dementia person compared to a PwD brain is like comparing the fastest broadband connection to Dial up Internet.

All health care staff should follow care plan preferences for PWD. Read them, review them and pass on information to new staff and agency staff. Find out about shower times, food, and clothing preferences. Learn about past experiences, past occupations, interests. ritual, and religious, spiritual or cultural needs.

In summary, what I learnt from the workshop is there are many practical things I can put into place as an AIN.

One main message from all speakers at the workshop was always treat the person as an individual right throughout their journey.

What struck me in a heartfelt way was that as a professional carer, I hold the gift of a person’s identity in my hand every time I work with a PwD. Do not label or ignore this identity. I am in a unique position as a PwD carer to treasure, nurture and respect this gift.

View the DTSC website for free E-learning here>>http://dtsc.com.au/ Alzheimers Australia has many resources for AIN’s here too>> https://fightdementia.org.au/ See this weeksDPT Facebook posts for more information on Dementia.

Dual Qualification Certificate 3 in Aged Care and Home and Communtiy Care starts 3rd AUgust at the Burleigh Waters Communtiy Centre. Book Now http://www.dptraining.com.au/enrolment