Dementia Training for Health Professionals - Scoping Study
In late 2007, the Centre was approached by NSW Health to conduct a scoping study about current opportunities for dementia education and training for health professionals in NSW. The study was conducted between March 2008 and July 2008, and included interviews with 27 key stakeholder groups representing health and care service providers with whom people with dementia and their carers interact during their ‘dementia journey’, and with patient/client and carer representatives, as well as training providers and peak organisations. In addition, a short internet search was conducted to complement this work and inform the Department of the current opportunities for dementia education and training for health professionals in NSW.
Two key messages emerged from the study as follows:
- It is clear that dementia is core business for the health system and that this needs to be reflected at the systemic as well as local level.
- The philosophy of person-centred care should underpin the delivery of health and care services.
In total, 19 recommendations were made to the Department to improved dementia training opportunities for health professionals. These included suggestions for the use of one-off training funds under the current NSW Dementia Action Plan 2007– 2009, should recurrent funding become available. In addition, recommendations were made regarding systemic changes which could be undertaken to make dementia training more accessible and integrated within education and training programs for health professions, community care providers, and for the community in general.