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Improving dementia diagnosis and care event, September 2015

The Oxford AHSN Dementia Clinical Network held an event jointly with the Thames Valley Strategic Clinical Network (SCN) in September 2015. The focus was on improving dementia diagnosis and care by highlighting variation in diagnosis, prescribing and post-diagnostic services. Read the programme here.

Over 80 people attended. Participants included consultant psychiatrists and gerontologists, memory clinic and research nurses, psychiatry trainees, GPs and allied health professionals as well as researchers and managers from across the Oxford AHSN and SCN network.

The event began with Peter Watson, a carer representative, reminding us of the importance of including the views of carers and people with dementia in our work.

The SCN gave a presentation on current projects and Health Education Thames Valley reported on training initiatives.

Dr Stephanie Oldroyd described comprehensive post diagnostic support services in Milton Keynes.

Dr Barbara Barrie gave a presentation end-of-life care for people with dementia, highlighting some of the key issues and barriers to good care.

Dr Jacqui Hussey presented data regarding dementia diagnosis and care across the area (for example anti-dementia drug prescribing) and highlighted variation between services. This will be an important area to take forward.

Gaye Poole and Amy Enticknap presented scenes from their thought-provoking play Connie’s Colander. This stimulated much discussion.

Dr Jacqui Hussey and Mandy Blair (Young Dementia UK) described Berkshire and Oxfordshire services for people with young onset dementia and their carers. They highlighted wide variation with some localities having no provision at all specifically for this group.

The event closed with Professor Simon Lovestone bringing us up to date on dementia research, and Dr Rupert McShane, the Oxford AHSN Dementia Clinical Network Lead, leading a stimulating discussion on diagnosistic practice, in particular the challenges around diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment.

Evaluation of the event showed it was very well received by participants, with all those returning forms describing the event as good or very good.

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