The Douglas Grove GP Surgery based in Witham has recently joined the Braintree District Dementia Action Alliance, developing a service to become more person-centred, with a greater understanding of the needs of patients living with Dementia.
Clare Young of the Alzheimer’s Society has been working closely with the Douglas Grove GP Surgery in order to help make them ‘dementia friendly.’
The surgery has set up a clinic in partnership with the Alzheimer’s Society for patients living with dementia and their carers. It has also reviewed its signage and provided Dementia Friends training for its staff.
The surgery then approached the Braintree District Dementia Action Alliance [BDDAA], chaired by Community360, to see whether they could become a member. They were contacted recently by the BDDAA who let them know that their application had been successful.
Bridget Tighe, Engagement Officer at Community360 said: “Dementia Friends is the biggest ever social action movement to change perceptions of dementia. It is so important that organisations start to build their understanding of what it’s like to live with dementia and the actions they can take to help people feel more at ease when visiting their premises. The surgery at Douglas Grove has now learnt how to manage the way appointments are made, greet patients, review the information they offer, and the support provided by the medical and reception teams.”
Clare Young, Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Support Worker in Essex, said: “I’ve been working with many GP surgeries across Mid-Essex, supporting them to be recognised as working towards becoming dementia friendly.
“I’m delighted that Douglas Grove Surgery has this recognition, joining the growing dementia movement which more than 400 dementia friendly communities across the UK are a part of.
“It’s a testament to Toni Hull’s hard work as the Practice Manager and all her staff. They have been enthusiastic about learning more about dementia and understanding how making small but important changes within the surgery can create a positive impact for people living with dementia when accessing their services.”
Bridget added: “Dementia doesn’t care who you are; it could affect us all. We need better public understanding of dementia as people with dementia often feel and frequently are, misunderstood, marginalised and isolated. And that means that they’re less likely to be able to live independently in their own communities.
We need to create a climate of kindness and understanding so that everyone affected by dementia feels part of, not apart from, society.”
Photo Shows: Jane Wood – Alzheimer’s Society
Toni Hull – Douglas Grove Surgery Practice Manager
Caroline Burrows-Wren, Community360
Georgina and Henry Davis – Patients at the surgery who have attended the support clinic