Helping primary care to support people with dementia

Sandwell Dementia Strategy

July 12 2020

Summary of the Sandwell Better Lives Dementia Strategy 2019-2025

Sandwell dementia strategy sets out 9 promises for people in Sandwell, including improving diagnosis and assessment for those at risk of dementia, helping people with dementia to live well in their community and providing better support for carers.


Our dementia strategy sets out 9 promises for people in Sandwell

1. To Improve Awareness

  • Raising general awareness about dementia
  • Helping local organisations keep up to date to better support people
  • Helping patients make informed choices

Key outcome: People with diagnosed or suspected dementia, (as well as those who support them) can access the right information at the right time, in the right place.

2. Bigger focus on prevention

  • Giving wider health and wellbeing advice at the right time
  • Supporting to remain independent
  • Working with other services to prevent crisis
  • Avoiding unnecessary admissions to hospital or long-term care

Key outcome: People in Sandwell have the right to good physical health and mental health/ wellbeing, to live fully and enjoy their independent lives for as long as they are able to do so.

3. Improve diagnosis and assessment for those at risk of dementia

  • Earlier identification of those at risk of or living with dementia, but are not yet known to us
  • Improving referral waiting times
  • Assessing for meaningful care
  • Emphasising the role of GP’s in the coordination and continuity of care

Key outcome: People living with dementia have a right to receive appropriate and timely diagnosis and receive co-ordinated support in the community, for themselves and their carers.

4. To help people with dementia live well in their community

  • Supporting from diagnosis to end of life with advance care planning
  • Tailored, person-centred support
  • Working with others to offer wider support networks
  • Option to apply for Personal Health Budget

Key outcome: People living with/ supporting someone with dementia feel able to access and contribute to their community, and carry out their daily tasks to remain independent for as long as possible.

5. Better support for carers

  • Assessing carers for their needs
  • Raising awareness on the support and resources available to them
  • Helping them to support the person they care and cope with their responsibilities
  • Improving carer health/wellbeing
  • Prioritise respite opportunities

Key outcome: People caring for someone living with dementia will feel informed and able to support their loved one, whilst able to maintain their own health and wellbeing.

6. To reduce the risk of crisis

  • Ensuring the right support is at hand to limit the risk of crises occurring
  • Ensuring that when a crisis occurs, high quality services are available to manage these situations
  • Reducing avoidable hospital admissions

Key outcome: People living with dementia and those providing support to them, will receive support to reduce the risk of and to help manage crisis.

7. To improve long term care for people with dementia

  • Ensuring data on the quality of long term and residential care establishments, is up to date to help carers find appropriate care
  • Ensuring continuity of support
  • All local hospitals and care homes to meet Dementia Friendly criteria

Key outcome: Those living with dementia who are in long term care have a right to live well and be able to access appropriate community support

8. Improve “End of Life” care

  • Having early conversations so the person with dementia and carers can be fully involved in Advance Care Planning and End of Life care decisions
  • Providing compassionate palliative care with dignity
  • Bereavement support for carers

Key outcome: People living with dementia and their families will have the opportunity to plan ahead, receive good end of life care and be able to die in accordance with their wishes.

9. Better knowledge and skills across the workforce

  • Ensuring the workforce and leadership is right, with the right capacity and skill mix
  • Agree local training standards across health, social care and community/ voluntary services
  • Upskilling local people/ carers

Key outcome: Those working or living with people with dementia will receive the support, awareness and training needed, from knowledgeable and skilled professionals, with accredited refreshers available.

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