Council backs plans for multi million investment in dementia care
Posted on: 14 March 2012
Devon County Councillors have backed plans today to develop up to 10 centres of excellence for people with dementia as part of a £11.2 million investment in its care homes.
Forecasts predict the number of people in Devon aged over 65 with dementia to rise from nearly 13,000 in 2011 to over 23,000 in 2030 – a rise of almost 80 per cent.
The Council says that around 600 residential places specifically to care for people with dementia are needed, and their plans announced today will provide about 300 places, meeting half of that currently unmet requirement.
The independent sector could help make up the shortfall says Cllr Stuart Barker, the Council’s Cabinet Member responsible for social care
“So many people are already experiencing care difficulties associated with dementia, and demand for support is growing.
“That’s why the investment we are announcing today to redevelop some of our homes as centres of excellence for dementia, and refurbish others, is critical in meeting people’s needs.
“We are investing in the future to make sure there is provision when it is needed.
“Our intention is for the centres of excellence to be more than just residential care homes. We would want them to include other non-residential services for people with dementia and their carers, who may still be living in their own homes.”
Evidence has shown that people living within dementia-specific care homes experience better outcomes, particularly those with more severe forms of dementia.
Which of the Council’s 23 residential homes are to be redeveloped has yet to be decided, and will depend upon where there is most demand for dementia-specific support in Devon and the level of relevant independent sector provision there is in those areas.
Redevelopment will involve substantial remodelling of the homes, and bedrooms for example will need to be made larger, with some having ensuite facilities. They will be completely redecorated, with new carpets, furnishings and have better lighting.
Remaining homes will also undergo refurbishment, including redecoration, carpet replacement and upgrading of furniture and equipment.
The Council has said that there will be full consultation and communication with residents and their families, members of staff, volunteers and other stakeholders before any such improvements are made.
“There’s a lot of work to be done before we reach that point, but all that will be required will be done in an orderly, managed and phased way so that disruption within homes is kept to a minimum,” said Cllr Barker.Posted in: Health and Wellbeing