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  • ADI seeks examples of good dementia design

    ADI seeks examples of good dementia design

    18.06.20 Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) has called for nominations as it sets out to highlight examples of good dementia design in the built environment. This year’s ADI World Alzheimer Report will focus on dementia design, so it has asked people to complete a short survey to identify innovative buildings and spaces to help people living with dementia.

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  • Political leader calls for relaxation of rules on accompanying patients

    Political leader calls for relaxation of rules on accompanying patients

    17.06.20 Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Jane Dodds has said family members should be able to accompany people with dementia on admission to hospital where they have suspected coronavirus infections. Dodds told the BBC that there should be a relaxation of the rules and that this should be considered on a case by case basis, for example when a patient’s first language is Welsh or another language and their ability to communicate in English has been compromised. "We do understand totally the situation at the moment with Covid-19 and how difficult it is for medical staff to keep everybody safe,” she was quoted as saying. “But we're asking that they look at every case and consider, where there are people with communication problems, whether they can take somebody in with them."

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  • Staff urged to take part in survey aiming to provide more support

    Staff urged to take part in survey aiming to provide more support

    16.06.20 All those working in dementia care have been urged to take part in a survey to find out what can be done to support staff more effectively during the pandemic and its aftermath. The social media/email survey, which has been organised by a range of UK universities and their health and social care partners, will provide important evidence on “what works, and what needs to be introduced, changed, or supported to support staff to manage and cope with the demands of work during these extraordinarily challenging times of Covid-19 and its legacy.” Everybody working in UK social care, social work, nursing, midwifery or as an allied health professional is invited to take part in the survey, which can be found here

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  • Nearly a third of managers say they could not always isolate residents

    Nearly a third of managers say they could not always isolate residents

    15.06.20 A survey of care home chiefs conducted during the second half of May sheds light on the complex challenges homes faced as they tried to isolate residents and control the spread of infection. Carried out by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, the survey of 77 senior care home managers found that they confronted “immense challenges” dealing with a chaotic PPE supply chain and dramatically inflated costs. It says 30% of senior managers reported that it was not always possible to isolate residents, while 45% were sometimes unable to isolate residents who walked with purpose. “Tests for residents and staff were often inaccessible, processes poorly coordinated, and results delayed,” the researchers said. “At the time of the survey only 40% of care homes had been able to access testing for asymptomatic residents.”

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  • 'Unknown' numbers of patients discharged to care homes with Covid-19

    'Unknown' numbers of patients discharged to care homes with Covid-19

    13.06.20 Around 25,000 people were discharged quickly from hospitals into care homes in England between mid-March and mid-April, but it is "not known" how many had Covid-19 as not all were tested, the National Audit Office (NAO) has said. The NAO says that more than one in three care homes reported a coronavirus outbreak between 9 March and 17 May, peaking at just over 1,000 homes in the first week of April, while the north-east was worst affected with just under half of care homes reporting an outbreak. The wave of discharges to care homes came after hospitals were advised on 17 March to “discharge urgently” all patients fit to leave so that beds could be freed up for those with acute healthcare needs. “It is not known how many patients discharged to care homes had Covid-19 at the point they left hospital,” the NAO says. “Due to government policy at the time, not all patients were tested for Covid-19 before discharge, with priority given to patients with symptoms."

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  • E-Newsletter - 12 June 2020

    E-Newsletter - 12 June 2020

    Here is this week’s round-up of dementia care news, stories and comment. This week's topics include an important survey, some useful resources for finding activities in care homes and at home, as well as an overview of the latest Covid-19 news. It is an editor's selection which we hope you will enjoy.

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  • Free online course for paid and unpaid carers

    Free online course for paid and unpaid carers

    12.06.20 A free online course for family and professional carers of people with dementia has been provided by Nottingham University. An eight-week course run by FutureLearn for the university is entitled Foundations in Dementia. It explores the signs and symptoms of dementia, interventions and support networks, among other things, and includes contributions from 30 dementia experts as well as family carers. Among the benefits of the course, says Professor Justine Schneider from the university, is to counter the impact of lockdown. “The course offers discussion areas that may help meet carers’ needs for peer support, which are particularly acute at this time,” she said.

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  • Moving residents is 'incredibly difficult'

    Moving residents is 'incredibly difficult'

    11.06.20 In evidence to the Scottish Parliament’s health committee, the chief nursing officer Professor Fiona McQueen talked about the detrimental effects of moving people with dementia within care homes as part of an infection control strategy. Prof McQueen pointed to the difficulties of applying hospital infection strategies in care homes, saying that grouping residents with Covid-19 together had negative consequences. “The residents have their own room, they have furniture, their ornaments, perhaps shawls or reminders that give them comfort, and they’ve perhaps been in that room for over a year,” she is quoted in the Scotsman newspaper as saying. “So the suggestion that we group together residents who have Covid-19 on one floor means that you would have to take the decision to move them. That is incredibly difficult."

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  • 'Devastating impact' of lack of social contact

    'Devastating impact' of lack of social contact

    10.06.20 Lack of social contact is causing the health of care home residents to deteriorate, an Alzheimer’s Society survey suggested, as the charity urged the government to take account of the “devastating impact” of isolation on people with dementia. The survey found that 79% of the 128 care homes responding reported a lack of social contact as damaging the health of residents with dementia. The Society called on the government to place social contact at the heart of its plans for people with dementia as the country emerges from lockdown, pointing out official figures indicating that “unexplained excess” deaths from dementia were 83% higher in England in April and 54% higher in Wales, with 10,000 excess deaths in this group in total. Three-quarters of care homes reported that GPs have been reluctant to visit residents.

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  • NCA members limit admissions from hospital

    NCA members limit admissions from hospital

    09.06.20 Independent care providers who are members of the National Care Association (NCA) say they are limiting admissions to their services from hospitals for fear that they may have coronavirus, but they admitted that this policy was not financially sustainable in the long-term. An NCA membership survey, which received more than 200 responses, found that providers had spent 323% more than they normally would on stocks of personal protective equipment (PPE) since the start of the pandemic and accused suppliers of profiteering by raising prices for essential items. NCA chair Nadra Ahmed said extra funding for social care from the government had not materialised on the frontline.

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