West Midlands come together to improve dementia care and support
On Wednesday 14 October West Midlands Strategic Clinical Network (WMSCN) and WM ADASS ran a regional Dementia Post Diagnostic Support event.
The objective of the day was to share knowledge around how dementia services are delivered in the West Midlands and elsewhere, and explore some of the key issues that were highlighted in the survey of dementia services early in the year.
Setting the scene at the beginning we heard the national perspective from Professor Alistair Burns, the National Clinical lead for Dementia NHS England, and from Ewan King, Director of Business Development and Delivery from the Social Care Institute for Excellence. Christine Guest, DCS from Sandwell Council and Ruth Houghton, DCS from Shropshire Council jointly chaired the conference.
Creating the focus on people with dementia and their carers for the day, we heard a series of video clips of people from across the West Midlands, and we explored some of the key findings from the West Midlands survey of commissioners, providers and people with dementia and their carers.
One of the key issues highlighted in the survey was around information and signposting and the group work then explored this from the perspective of the person with dementia or their carer – their feelings, their actions, the barriers their priorities.
In the afternoon a series of panels incorporating expertise from across the West Midlands and beyond, explored some of the key issues highlighted in the survey –
- how do we justify the return on investment for dementia services,
- links into primary care,
- integrating dementia with other conditions and
- creating a sustainable dementia service and links for carers.
Chris Guest told us:
“The dementia event was a lively interactive day, and we were really impressed with the passion all attending had to improve dementia care and support. We heard amazing stories from people with dementia, their carers, providers and commissioners about positive experiences but we were also rightly challenged to do more and do it quickly.
“Our challenge is now to harness that passion to relaunch the ADASS dementia network in the West Midlands, using the learning from this event to shape future commissioning strategy and to ensure we share the best practice presented on the day to benefit people with dementia and their carers across our region.
“Many thanks to all those who contributed to making the day such a success.”