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  • Kent NHS trust set to open Harmonia dementia village near Dover

    Kent NHS trust set to open Harmonia dementia village near Dover

    19.10.19 East Kent Hospitals NHS Trust is set to open what is billed as the UK’s first “dementia village” in two months’ time. Harmonia Village, near Dover, will be a £3.5 million complex containing six houses, each with five residents. There will be a shop, cinema, pub, hairdressers and a community centre offering an additional six “flexible” beds if there are referrals. “Wherever possible we have tried to create a home from home,” said Dr Phil Brighton, the trust’s clinical lead for dementia. “The expectation is that people can bring their own furniture if they would like, but that everyone gets their own personal space, including en-suites, accessible bathrooms.”

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  • Right time for a care home move depends on context, research finds

    Right time for a care home move depends on context, research finds

    18.10.19 Is there a universal “best time” for someone with dementia to move to a care home? The answer is no, according to researchers at King’s College London, whose study found that moving to a care home depended on many factors other than symptom severity. These included wellbeing, the ability of family members to give support, and the availability of care home places. Decisions on moving into a care home could be distressing, but this could be eased by conversations between the people affected, social care professionals and care home managers, researchers discovered. “We would emphasise the value of conversation – really talking to people with the right experience – in managing potential distress and exploring options as early as possible,” said Dr Kritika Samsi.

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  • Finnish researchers discover potential diagnostic tool for FTD

    Finnish researchers discover potential diagnostic tool for FTD

    17.10.19 Researchers in Finland have come up with a potential diagnostic tool to identify frontotemporal dementia (FTD), which they say is often confused with psychiatric disorders because of behavioural symptoms that may accompany it. They found that FTD patients had significantly higher levels of a protein called neurofilament in their blood than patients with psychiatric disorders. The researchers, from the Universities of Eastern Finland and Oulu, said differential diagnoses between early onset FTD and psychiatric disorders were “extremely challenging,” but said serum neurofilament profiles provided an “excellent and promising tool” for solving the problem. Findings were published in the Journal of Neurology.

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  • NAPA calls on supporters to run bake-off fundraisers

    NAPA calls on supporters to run bake-off fundraisers

    16.10.19 Members and supporters of NAPA (National Activity Providers Association) are being asked to host a “bake-off” or bake sale as part of National Baking Week next week. They have been invited to “rise to the challenge” as a fundraiser for NAPA, which said just £5 could fund half an hour on its helpline, £10 could fund an hour responding to helpline emails, and £20 could fund two hours of skilled staff time. Options were to organise a sale of specially baked cakes or to run a bake-off. Full instructions HERE

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  • Alzheimer’s Society asks for new problems to solve

    Alzheimer’s Society asks for new problems to solve

    15.10.19 Alzheimer’s Society has launched an Innovation Hub, inviting people affected by dementia to join up and share their challenges so that innovative solutions can be created. The charity said it had assembled a team dedicated to finding innovative answers to the problems put before it. “We believe innovation can support people to live well with dementia but we need to understand the challenges you face – big or small,” said Simon Lord, innovation programme manager at Alzheimer’s Society. Visitors to the Innovation Hub webpage can suggest challenges and vote for their favourite to decide which project the innovation team works on next.

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  • Charter of Rights celebrates 10th anniversary in Scottish Parliament

    Charter of Rights celebrates 10th anniversary in Scottish Parliament

    14.10.19 A celebration at the Scottish Parliament hosted by Alzheimer Scotland last Wednesday marked the 10th anniversary of the pioneering Charter of Rights for people with dementia and their carers. Now a centrepiece of the Scottish Government’s national dementia strategies, the Charter of Rights “helped to dramatically shift our understanding of dementia away from a solely medical model to a person-centred, rights-based understanding,” said Alzheimer Scotland chief executive Henry Simmons.

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  • E-Newsletter - 11 Oct 2019

    E-Newsletter - 11 Oct 2019

    Here is this week’s round-up of dementia care news, stories and comment. This week's topics include a potential diagnostic tool for FTD, a call for ideas from the Alzheimer's Society Innovation Hub, and a new Kent dementia village. It is an editor's selection which we hope you will enjoy.

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  • Strictly's Arlene Phillips gives boost to music therapy

    Strictly's Arlene Phillips gives boost to music therapy

    11.10.19 Care homes charity MHA has found a role for Strictly Come Dancing ex-judge Arlene Phillips in its new campaign to raise awareness of the impact music therapy can have on people with dementia. Launched on BBC Music Day, the MHA’s “Moment of Joy” campaign harnesses the power of social media to promote a series of video stories and a specially commissioned animation voiced by Phillips. MHA is encouraging people to support the campaign by sharing a song that has brought them joy in life using the hashtag #MyMomentOfJoy on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. “I’ve spent my life working with and through music and know its incredible power to move and inspire. That’s why I’m delighted to support the brilliant work done by MHA and their specialist music therapists,” said Phillips, #MyMomentOfJoy campaign ambassador.

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  • Big brands release archives for reminiscence app

    Big brands release archives for reminiscence app

    10.10.19 Groceries giant Unilever has partnered National Museums Liverpool to produce a smartphone app which brings back memories of advertising for the company’s iconic brands. Called “My House of Memories” the app includes visual and audio prompts encouraging people with dementia to engage in conversation about famous old adverts and packaging for Domestos (“Big Bad Dom”), Persil (“Wash Whiter”) and Jif (“the simplest way to squeeze a lemon”), among others. Unilever head of archives Claire Tunstall said that “many of our brands have played a memorable role in family life for generations and continue to do so every day. It’s great to see our archives being given a second life in the My House of Memories app so they can be used for such an impactful and positive purpose.”

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  • Meeting Centre pioneers win additional funding

    Meeting Centre pioneers win additional funding

    09.10.19 National Lottery funding has been awarded to two pioneering Meeting Centres, originally set up to trial a new form of community support for people with dementia and their carers. Droitwich Spa and Leominster Meeting Centres, part of a Europe-wide project taken forward in the UK by Worcester University, have been awarded £175,000 and £96,620 respectively to support their work in the coming years. The two centres were the first of their kind in this country, being essentially social clubs where people with dementia and their carers can enjoy each other’s company and participate in activities that address their emotional, cognitive and social needs. Between 15 and 20 Meeting Centres are expected to open across the UK over the next three years as part a support programme run by the ADS.

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