Background Work commissioned by Hospice UK suggests hospices need to embrace other life limiting illnesses including dementia. More recent work by Hospice UK has resulted in guidance for hospices in taking first steps. The number of UK hospices embracing dementia care in different and creative ways is increasing.
Aims Improve dementia service provision locally and extend hospice work in dementia care. The scheme will support our aim by: developing and increasing links with different stakeholders including people living with dementia and carers, voluntary, statutory and third sector organisations. Provision of dementia buddies will enable people with dementia and their carers locally to make future plans: navigate local systems and services: facilitate living and dying better with dementia.
Methods Project lead employed to manage the project, a steering group, including a person with dementia and a carer will guide the project over the first year. Ten volunteers will be recruited from Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Friends/Champions and those with an interest in dementia. Buddy training will be provided by Alzheimer’s Society and End of Life Partnership. The service will be based within day services at the hospice. Carers and people with dementia may come to the hospice for buddy support with: information giving: sign posting: accessing complementary therapies etc. Buddy home visits may also be undertaken if preferred. Evaluation will be ongoing. Outcome Stars, questionnaires and interviews will measure change and improved well-being.
Discussion Support for people with dementia and carers in East Cheshire has been limited but changing. This project contributes to local dementia agendas from a hospice perspective. It also contributes to the national agenda and call for hospices to embrace dementia as a life limiting illness. In the developmental and implementation stage, it demonstrates creativity in supporting people with dementia and their carers locally to live and die better.
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