What is de­men­tia?

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Con­tin­ued from page 19

with de­men­tia.

“One sig­nif­i­cant is­sue De­men­tia Aus­tralia staff of­ten hear fol­low­ing a di­ag­no­sis of de­men­tia is how iso­lat­ing it can be, which can be dev­as­tat­ing and de­bil­i­tat­ing,” De­men­tia Aus­tralia CEO Ma­ree Mccabe said.

“How­ever, the right ser­vices can help peo­ple re­con­nect and re-es­tab­lish re­la­tion­ships with part­ners, fam­i­lies and friends which can be so im­por­tant for their emo­tional well-be­ing. So­cial en­gage­ment and keep­ing phys­i­cally and men­tally ac­tive are also key in con­tribut­ing to bet­ter health and life­style out­comes fol­low­ing a di­ag­no­sis of de­men­tia,” Ma­ree said.

Un­til a cure is found, the full-time care will be­come es­sen­tial at some stage.

Danny Oak­en­full said, “RFBI Dubbo Ma­sonic Vil­lage, our res­i­den­tial care vil­lage, has a 20-bed mem­ory sup­port wing. Here peo­ple liv­ing with de­men­tia re­ceive tai­lored pro­grams based on the in­di­vid­ual’s per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ence and needs.

“Our spe­cialised unit has its own bar­be­cue area, plant pot­ting space and a men’s shed to en­sure peo­ple are en­gaged in mean­ing­ful ac­tiv­ity. The res­i­den­tial vil­lage plays a part much later in the process by pro­vid­ing spe­cialised nurs­ing care in a 24-hour, sup­port­ive en­vi­ron­ment,” he said.

De­men­tia is the sec­ond lead­ing cause of death of Aus­tralians and the lead­ing cause of death among Aus­tralian women.

“There is a per­cep­tion in the com­mu­nity that noth­ing can be done fol­low­ing a di­ag­no­sis of de­men­tia, how­ever with an es­ti­mated 425,000 Aus­tralians liv­ing with de­men­tia this year alone – which is ex­pected to soar to 536,000 peo­ple by 2025 and more than 1.1 mil­lion peo­ple by 2056 – it is vi­tal peo­ple un­der­stand the right sup­port can make the world of dif­fer­ence to ev­ery­one im­pacted by de­men­tia,” Ma­ree Mccabe said.

“These fig­ures are cause for con­cern and we do know we need to make sure we con­tinue to in­vest in more re­search to try to find ways to bet­ter treat the con­di­tion, or find a cure. But in the mean­time, we must also make sure the huge num­ber of Aus­tralians im­pacted by de­men­tia are ac­cess­ing good qual­ity, ap­pro­pri­ate sup­port and ser­vices,” she said.

RFBI’S Danny Oak­en­full added, “I en­cour­age car­ers, fam­i­lies and friends to seek as­sis­tance early, to seek in­for­ma­tion about care at home ser­vices, and make your­self known to our vil­lage. You never how we may be able to help.”■ De­men­tia is a term used to de­scribe the symp­toms of a large group of ill­nesses which cause a pro­gres­sive de­cline in a per­son’s func­tion­ing. ••

Where to go for more in­for­ma­tion

D.A.N.S. – Dubbo Area Nurs­ing Ser­vice

Di­rec­tor, Jac­qui Martel

345 Dar­ling Street, Dubbo Phone: 02 6885 6407 www.dansin­home­care.com.au

Royal Freema­sons’ Benev­o­lent In­sti­tu­tion

Danny Oak­en­full, Gen­eral Man­ager RFBI Dubbo Ma­sonic Retirement Vil­lage

Phone: 02 6800 1400

Email: doak­en­full@rfbi.com.au www.rfbi.com.au

De­men­tia Aus­tralia

Na­tional De­men­tia Helpline 1800 100 500

Jenny Roberts, project of­fi­cer, Dubbo

Phone: 0407 615 480 Email: Jenny.roberts@de­men­tia. org.au www.de­men­tia.org.au


Respite Care Con­sul­ta­tion Pa­per com­ments wanted

z Aus­tralian Gov­ern­ment con­sul­ta­tion pa­per: seek­ing com­ments on respite care

z Com­ment dead­line: 5pm, Friday, April 13, 2018

z Send feed­back to: ACFA. Sec­re­tar­iat@health.gov.au or by post to ACFA Sec­re­tar­iat, Depart­ment of Health, MDP 465, GPO Box 9848, Can­berra, ACT 2601.

z The gov­ern­ment is sched­uled to re­port on Wed­nes­day, Oc­to­ber 31, 2018.

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