I decided to do my own bit on behalf of Social Care Alba for the month of May. Here is how I got on.
I was contacted by the Intensive Care Unit of Manchester Royal Infirmary. They wanted to help people who had communication problems following surgery, often because they have tubes to help their breathing inserted into their throats.
We supplied our Communication Tool app free of charge to the hospital and it is now in use across ICU and is being introduced to other wards where communication problems exist due to stroke, dementia or multiple sclerosis.
Finally I was able to put them in touch with Clairmont a company we formed links with several years ago. Clairmont provide signs, clocks and other products that help people with Dementia identify their surroundings, time and place more easily. Lets hope this small change makes a real difference to peoples lives.
Nataly and I attended "Help Make Edinburgh Dementia Friendly". The idea of the day was to look at all the ways we could improve the city to make it more Dementia Friendly. The day was facilitated by Edinburgh City Council and Alzheimer Scotland.
It soon became obvious that we all felt that a more appropriate term should be Accessible Edinburgh or Enabling Edinburgh. This reduced the stigma of identifying one condition and looked to address the common problems across the city.
There were too many different ideas to list, however here are some of the highlights:
- Raising awareness across businesses and the public
- Raising knowledge amongst health care staff
- Specific signage across the city e.g. Toilets, Buses, Banks
- Seating and improved access across the city
- Quiet areas in parks, sensory gardens
- Local Dementia Officer to give Advice and Support
- Website giving activities, areas of support and Accessible shops and businesses
- Dementia friendly church services films and theater productions
- Dementia Friendly recognition scheme or business
Yet to come is a Promoting Excellence conference held by Dumfries and Galloway and the Care Inspectorate. The conference aim to hep people feel more informed and confident in taking part in Promoting Excellence locally.
It will include talks from Dumfries and Galloway's Dementia Nurse Consultant and local Dementia Champions based in social service settings.
I hope to bring back ideas to Social Care Alba that we can champion in the year ahead.
I hope you found the Blog useful and it has encouraged you to learn more about Dementia. If we all make just one small change then together we can make a huge difference to the lives of others.