Dementia strategy gains momentum

Ambulance side shot

As last week's dementia awareness week came to a close, it allowed me to review the progress of the Trust’s dementia strategy, along with a personal reflection of where we find ourselves in in supporting all affected by or living with dementia.

Work on the Trust strategy is gaining momentum. A scoping workshop earlier in the month explored the year one aims and how we are to achieve. The workshop brought together many areas of the Trust ranging from training and education to the patient experience team. If you are not familiar with the trust dementia strategy, you can click here to see it on our website.

On the back of the our strategy and through work with the National Ambulance Mental Health Group we have supported the launch on the 5th May of the AACE Dementia Best Practice Guidance for ambulance services.

You may notice similarities between the two documents, this reinforces the need to ensure that nationally, ambulance trusts are working together to ensure that our dementia care is the most appropriate for all we respond to.

Locally dementia awareness week highlighted the diverse ways that many organisations and local groups were highlighting dementia. I attended events across the region ranging from a dementia awareness roadshow in Bedford supported by the Alzheimer’s society, to an awards ceremony hosted by the Mayor of Ipswich to recognise the positive efforts of many partners that have supported Ipswich to work towards becoming a fully dementia friendly community.

Mark Littlechild (DLO Mid Essex) attended a “Singing for the brain” concert at Chelmsford Cathedral on behalf of the Trust, I will share Marks comments from the event “I thoroughly enjoyed the service and the 18 songs we all sang, which range from an adapted singing in the rain (to singing for the brain) to a finale of ‘bring me sunshine’. An excellent event, that I was proud to represent EEAST for”.

Dementia affects many people; some estimates are that it will touch 1 in 3 of the population going forward. Since launching the strategy many staff within EEAST have been in contact to share their experiences and offer to support to the strategy. Apologies if I haven’t got back to you all yet. I am hoping to develop, alongside the Trust strategy, a network of Dementia ambassadors that will be able to work locally within the Trust, supporting activities and groups such as their local Dementia Action Alliances. I will share this when completed.

If you would like to know more about Dementia, I would suggest visiting the Alzheimer’s society fact sheets page that offer information around many topics

Duncan Moore, Area Clinical Lead

Published 25th May, 2017

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