Dementia Congress

Dementia Congress - celebrating the best in dementia care

The Dementia Congress is an annual event organised by the Journal of Dementia Care bringing together the latest ideas and innovations in dementia care. It also provides a place for professionals, experts and people living with dementia to learn, network and share ideas and experiences in an exciting and positive environment.

This year at the event in Brighton, Group Medical Director for Four Seasons Health Care, Dr Claire Royston, will be presenting: ‘A shared experience - the impact of a dementia simulation on staff understanding and empathy’

Dr Claire explains: “Empathy is the understanding another person's thoughts, feelings, and daily experiences from their point of view rather than from your own, sometimes described as being able to ‘walk in the shoes’ of another. Developing this understanding together with an opportunity to talk about and share the experience provides a meaningful foundation for the learning of those supporting or caring for Individuals living with dementia.

Four Seasons Health Care has developed a Dementia Experience learning session in which groups participate in a simulation of the sensory, cognitive and emotional aspects of living with dementia. Groups of between 6 and 20 participants have been successfully provided. The equipment necessary for the session is very low cost and can readily be moved to different venues.

Following the experience there is a facilitated reflective session where individuals reflect as a group and are facilitated to relate their own feeling and insights to the day to day experience of those living with dementia who they are caring for and supporting.

A critical characteristic of this learning programme is that Colleagues working in a care home from a wide range of backgrounds could be supported to facilitate sessions rather than the sessions being facilitated by ‘expert’ trainers. This has allowed the programme to be delivered at scale and to date over 8,000 Four Seasons Health Care Colleagues have now completed the learning session.

To support the development of a positive dementia culture within the organisation it has also been mandatory for Colleagues working in non-care facing roles both in our care homes and in central support services together with all levels of management to complete this learning.

Feedback from Colleagues will be presented. In addition we have now provided sessions for Family Carers and external professionals and feedback regarding the impact of the Dementia Experience from these participants will also be presented.”
Dr Claire will be presenting at 12pm on Wednesday 7th November during ‘Parallel session 1’. You can also visit our stand during the event from 6-8th November where we’ll be running the dementia experience sessions through the day.

We’ll also be sharing updates on our social media channels (Facebook, Twitter) throughout the event or you can check back on the news section of our website to find out what we discovered during the Congress.


Date published: 31 October 2018

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