Dementia Capable Care Program
COMMUNICATING WITH CARE
It wasn't long after Haley Brumfield began work as an occupational therapist in an assisted living facility that she noticed an unfortunate, troubling problem. Communication with dementia patients was a constant, unpredictable struggle. Haley wanted to not only help her beloved patients, but she also wanted to make a difference within our company, equipping staff with the knowledge they need to care for dementia patients at the highest level of quality and understanding.
THE DEMENTIA CAPABLE CARE PROGRAM
At Mid South Rehab Services, we strive to be the best. In order to better care for and understand our patients suffering from dementia, we have implemented the Dementia Capable Care Program in our skilled nursing facilities. In addition to training our own therapists, we have also take the time to provide training to other nurses and aides who work closely with each of the residents.
The mission of the Dementia Capable Care Program is to ensure those with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD) live to their functional and emotional potential. By identifying paradigm shifts in which patients change the way they think from cognitive disabilities to cognitive abilities creates a more desirable environment with greater outcomes. Our therapists are also trained in administering the appropriate cognitive assessments and screening tools to determine the patient’s best ability to function. This allows our therapists to provide just the right amount of challenge when developing patient-centered treatment plans.
Part of the Dementia Capable Care Program is a commitment to providing education to increase the understanding of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. This includes exploring how these conditions impact patient cognition and ability to function with our staff members as well as our patient’s families. Interdisciplinary approach is key, and our goal is to ensure that our patient, staff, and the family are all on the same page.
A key component of our Dementia Capable Care Program is identifying remaining abilities at each dementia stage as defined by the Allen Cognitive Levels. In addition, we take the time to delineate key care approaches for each dementia state, which helps to promote the highest possible level of function in ADL, mobility, and leisure activity. Residents with dementia can accomplish and improve at every stage with the correct approach! It is crucial for our patient’s success to utilize an approach that is always patient centered.
It is very important to communicate to family members that their loved one is still a person inside – whether or not they are the person they remember. The majority of the negative behaviors patients display can be prevented by the way we communicate with our patients. Our therapists also implement behavior management plans to anticipate and meet the needs of our residents with dementia.