Dementia Informed Practice Level
The Dementia Informed Practice Level provides the baseline knowledge and skills required by all staff in health and social care settings, including in a person's own home.
Stage - Across all stages of the dementia journey
What staff know (knowledge)
- Appreciate that people with dementia, their families and carers are able to live well and maintain a quality of life valued by them.
- Understand that a good and valued quality of life should reflect the priorities of the person with dementia, their family and carers.
- Understand what is meant by the term rights-based, person-centred support in relation to people with dementia.
- Understand that legislation exists to support carers in their role.
- Understand the importance of recognising, enhancing and supporting the strengths and abilities of people with dementia.
- Understand the benefits of continued engagement in life roles and relationships, and that people with dementia have a right to be supported to achieve this.
- Understand that people with dementia have the right and ability to develop new skills and make the most of new opportunities.
- Know how to access local community information and services that can provide information and support for people with dementia, their families and carers.
- Understand some of the common difficulties people with dementia may experience, such as memory problems, confusion, communication, perception and sensory changes.
- Know how to communicate with people who are experiencing confusion, memory or communication difficulties.
- Know about potential different and supplementary tools, techniques and methods that people with dementia may use to enhance communication.
- Understand that diversity, equality and inequality issues impact on the experience and support needs of people with dementia (for example, people from different cultural and ethnic groups, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, people with learning disabilities, younger people and people with disabilities).
- Know how existing and emerging technologies can enable people with dementia to live well.
- Understand the potential physical, social and environmental hazards and risks to the safety and wellbeing of people with dementia.
- Appreciate when the physical or social environment can compromise the health and safety of people who are experiencing confusion and memory problems.
- Understand that people with dementia, their families and carers need support for changes at different stages of the dementia journey.
- Understand that the changes people with dementia experience can mean that they may need support, or environmental adjustment, to live well and remain engaged in community life and valued activities.
- Understand that people with dementia may have a range of other health problems/conditions that influence their support needs.
- Understand how the changes experienced by people with dementia can have an effect on their behaviour, relationships and activities, and that this can affect their mood.
- Understand how the environment circumstances/situation/context can have an effect on people with dementia.
- Know how to respond in a supportive and sensitive way to a person with dementia who is distressed.
- Understand the effects of stigma and fear of stigma associated with dementia.
- Understand that people with dementia may be at risk of experiencing neglect, harm or abuse – including physical, sexual, psychological and financial.
- Understand that legislation exists to protect the rights of people with dementia and safeguard them against any potential risk or harm.
- Know about local adult protection protocols and policies.
- Understand the benefits of risk enablement in giving people choice and control.
What staff are able to do (skills)
- Interact with people with dementia, their families and carers in a way that recognises and respects their rights, wishes, priorities and needs.
- Interact with people with dementia in a person-centred way that recognises and utilises their unique strengths and abilities.
- Contribute to supporting people with dementia and their families to explore and engage in new opportunities.
- Provide relevant information or signpost to an appropriate person or service to enable people with dementia to access chosen community services, supportive technology and activities.
- Recognise when a person appears to be experiencing confusion, memory or communication difficulties.
- Communicate in a way that suits and responds to people's strengths and needs, using their preferred tools and technology if required.
- Communicate in a way that recognises individual needs and diversity and the potential impact of memory difficulties and confusion.
- Support people who appear confused or are experiencing problems with their memory to manage situations where the environment is challenging or presents risks to them.
- Support people to live well with dementia at any stage of their dementia journey by ensuring that their wishes, needs and priorities are continually revisited.
- Identify areas of concern and respond appropriately to people with dementia, their families and carers who appear distressed.
- Engage with people with dementia in a respectful, person-centred way to negate the impact of stigma and discrimination.
- Recognise when a person with dementia is experiencing neglect, harm or abuse.
- Take appropriate action according to organisational procedures when concerned that a person with dementia may be experiencing neglect, harm or abuse.
- Contribute to supporting people with dementia to take positive risks that provide opportunities and benefits for them.