Background The UK's Prime Minister's Dementia Challenge highlights the need to improve care for people with dementia. There is growing evidence that hospitalisation can often cause them harm, with increased mortality and morbidity. They can suffer increased disorientation and distress during hospital admissions, with over use of psychotropics and sedatives. However uptake of ACP discussions is often poor.
Aim To improve end-of-life care and reduce hospitalisation for people with dementia through the GSF Dementia Care distance-learning training programme.
The GSF Dementia Care Training interactive programme aims to:
Increase awareness of dementia.
Improve communication and Advance Care Planning/Best Interest discussions.
Reduce inappropriate hospitalisation, with more dying in their usual place of residence.
Improve pain management
Methods The pilot study involving 50 learners from different settings is currently underway, using the GSF Virtual Learning Zone. Certifications is supported by Stafford University.
The evaluation includes recording number of ACPs undertaken, rate of hospitalisation, use of pain assessment tools and illustrative case histories. Evaluations are being analysed, with results available by May 2013
Results It is hoped that the training programme will show improvements in the areas noted, particularly increased ACP and reduced hospitalisation rates, enabling more to live and die at home.
Discussion These findings are in line with the UK's PM Challenge in dementia.
Conclusion We hope to demonstrate the quantitative and qualitative improvements in care in increased uptake and implementation of ACP discussions in people with dementia.
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