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  • The WHELD programme: showing the benefits

    The WHELD programme: showing the benefits

    Do person-centred care and social activity benefit people living with dementia in care homes? Lucy Garrod, Jane Fossey and Clive Ballard discuss the results of the WHELD study and implications for practice

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  • Technology helps people stay healthy at home

    Technology helps people stay healthy at home

    Does technology have the answers to early identification of health problems in dementia? Helen Rostill and colleagues discuss the early findings from their pioneering study: Technology Integrated Health Management (TIHM) for dementia

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  • A direct dementia referral pathway

    A direct dementia referral pathway

    Early diagnosis can help people to live well with dementia, but what if GPs omit to make the necessary referrals? Beverley Drogan came up with an ingenious answer

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  • Broad welcome for NHS plan on taking action on 'major killer conditions'

    Broad welcome for NHS plan on taking action on 'major killer conditions'

    15.01.19 Reactions to the NHS long-term plan in the dementia field were generally positive with Alzheimer’s Society saying that the plan promised to save almost half a million more lives involving “practical action on major killer conditions and investment in cutting edge treatments.” Society chief executive Jeremy Hughes said: “Dementia is the biggest challenge facing our health and care system, and a number of proposals in the NHS Long Term Plan will help us meet this challenge.” Dementia UK said the plan would shift the focus away from hospitals and was a “welcome step in the right direction,” although it would also require a serious commitment to recruiting skilled professionals and publication of the long-promised social care Green Paper. “It is all well and good to focus on preventing conditions like dementia, but we need to give due regard to people who are facing health challenges in the here and now,” said Dementia UK director of clinical services Paul Edwards.

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  • NHS long-term plan promises better care for people with dementia

    NHS long-term plan promises better care for people with dementia

    14.01.19 More integrated care and a focus on prevention measures are among the pillars of the NHS 10-year plan, launched last week, accompanied by a £20.5 billion cash boost and a “guarantee” that investment in primary, community and mental health care will outpace that in other areas. Digital technology such as location trackers for people with dementia is highlighted as a way to reduce hospital admissions. Rapid response teams, working across primary care and local hospitals, will reach vulnerable patients within 2 hours to prevent hospitalisation, while “expanded neighbourhood teams” including dementia workers will be on hand as part of “fully integrated community-based health care”. A pilot scheme in which teams of health professionals are assigned to care homes will be rolled out nationally – the plan says that the Enhanced Health in Care Homes scheme has reduced the number of residents needing to be rushed to hospital by meeting their needs within the care homes.

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  • E-Newsletter - 11 Jan 2019

    E-Newsletter - 11 Jan 2019

    I am delighted to bring you my week’s round-up of dementia care news, stories and comment. This week's topics include the NHS long-term plan, new major research initiatives and a new music for dementia website resource. It is an editor's selection which I hope you will enjoy.

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  • JDC Asks...

    JDC Asks...

    Sex and intimacy among residents are sometimes seen as the “last taboo” in care homes. Do attitudes need to change?

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  • New workshops and training in 2019, Creative Dementia Arts Network

    New workshops and training in 2019, Creative Dementia Arts Network

    11.01.19 Creative Dementia Arts Network are now calling for applications from arts practitioners for FLOURISH workshops taking place in January and February, which offer: teaching about dementia and arts programming including workshops with experienced arts practitioners; an opportunity to link theory to practice during 6 weekly 3 hour arts sessions with residents with a dementia living in a care home; Coaching and support before, after and during the sessions from experienced arts practitioners; additional training sessions at the home led by experienced arts practitioners; and a FLOURISH training manual and resource list. See their website for more details HERE.

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  • Mice yield “promising” findings in search for dementia treatments

    Mice yield “promising” findings in search for dementia treatments

    10.01.19 In what Alzheimer’s Society describes as a “promising” new line of research on dementia treatments, Yale University researchers have concocted a drinkable cocktail of designer molecules that apparently interferes with one of the early processes in the development of Alzheimer’s disease. They found that a polymer formed from a decomposed antibiotic could pass the blood-brain barrier and repair damaged synapses in mice, which then recovered lost memory. It acted by interfering with the interaction between prion protein and amyloid beta. “There hasn’t been a new dementia drug for 15 years so it’s promising to see the results of this study in mice,” said Dr James Pickett, head of research at Alzheimer’s Society. “But there is still a long way to go before we can say if this treatment is safe or effective in people.”

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  • Personalised care plans cut nursing home admissions by 40%

    Personalised care plans cut nursing home admissions by 40%

    09.01.19 Nursing home admissions fell by 40% when people were given a personalised dementia care plan following a 90-minute face-to-face assessment with a nurse practitioner specialising in dementia care. Research conducted by the UCLA Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Program in the US found that the programme, designed to help people with dementia remain in their own homes, saved the health system money but was cost-neutral after taking programme costs into account. The study followed 1,083 Medicare beneficiaries over three years and involved the nurse practitioners collaborating with primary care and specialist doctors to implement the personalised care plan. While the programme had no impact on rates of hospitalisation, “the most striking finding was that patients enrolled in the programme reduced their risk of entering a nursing home by about 40%,” said Dr Lee Jennings. The study was published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine on December 21.

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