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Dementia/Mental Capacity Issues
Developing planning for the future in a memory service
  1. S Burleigh1 and
  2. M Poppe2
  1. 1South London and the Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
  2. 2Institute of Pyschiatry, London, UK


The Modernisation Initiative End of Life Care Programme aim is to achieve excellent end of life care for all in Lambeth and Southwark, including those with dementia and their carers.

Earlier diagnosis of dementia can enable the person affected to indicate their future care and treatment preferences through completing a future care plan. Later, in the more advanced stages of dementia, there may be deterioration in cognitive functioning which affects people's capacity to express their wishes.

Prior to the intervention, the views and opinions were sought from service users and staff. These were of the usefulness of the intervention, the questions in the document as well as style and language.

An implementation study was set up to deliver future care planning to people who received a diagnosis of dementia though a new memory service.

The Nurse Advisor developed and delivered training for mental health care professionals in future care planning using interactive forum theatre and role play. This training was conducted and evaluated as part of the induction of a new memory service as well as to Community Mental Health teams for older adults.

Following training, facilitation and role modelling by the Nurse Advisor, people with dementia were offered the opportunity to plan for their future. Staff were supported in reflective learning sessions.

Following ethical approval, the researcher conducted interviews with people with dementia and their families to evaluate the acceptability and effectiveness of the future care planning conversations and their feelings about these conversations.

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