Dementia care in Surrey

Dementia services in Surrey

If you are worried about dementia, talk to your GP who, as well as discussing your concerns, will advise on a diagnosis. They may carry out tests themselves or refer you to a Memory Clinic, which provides assessment and treatment for memory related problems in the community. If you have a diagnosis and are concerned, talk to your local Adult Social Care team or contact Alzheimer’s Society to speak to a Dementia Navigator.

Surrey County Council is working with the clinical commissioning groups in Surrey to meet the growing challenge of dementia, and have made a commitment to increase the diagnosis rate so that more people receive a good quality, early diagnosis, allowing for earlier planning, treatment, and care. Each clinical commissioning group area is developing a strategy. The aim of these strategies is to improve dementia services in the area based upon the local population and its needs which may vary across the county.

Dementia care – ‘community opportunities’

We have started to use the term ‘community opportunities’ in place of ‘day care’. This reflects the recent changes we have implemented on how we commission dementia services. These changes are a result of extensive discussions with the voluntary sector, private care sector and people living with dementia and their carers.

We are moving away from block contracts with one or two providers that limit choice and flexibility. Instead, a variety of providers will offer activities and support to individuals, including carers. This could be, for example, accessing a local sports club, help in accessing arts and culture, help to go shopping, befriending and peer support groups. Traditional day centres and short-term support in residential care still have roles to play in the new service, particularly for those with high needs.

For more information, and to find local services, visit www.surreyinformationpoint.org.uk

Dementia Navigator service

The Dementia Navigator service provides specialist support and advice in a personalised way, in order to sustain and improve the quality of life of people living with dementia, their carers and their family.

The navigators (currently provided by Alzheimer’s Society) signpost people with a diagnosis of dementia, and their carers, to appropriate services and provide them with information and advice to keep them as healthy and independent as possible in their own homes. This enables people to have choice and control over their lives, health and social care support.

There is now a single point of access for all services provided by Alzheimer’s Society in Surrey:

65 Woodham Lane,
Addlestone
KT15 3ND

Tel: 01932 855582
Email: surrey@alzheimers.org.uk

Dementia Friendly Communities

Run by Alzheimer’s Society, Dementia Friendly Communities have set about establishing one dementia friendly environment per borough or district. They are working with a variety of stakeholders across Surrey, including schools, gypsy and traveller communities, residential care homes and churches, to make connections and work towards establishing dementia friendly environments. This may involve staff being trained as Dementia Friends, or the environment being made more dementia friendly e.g. easily understood signage, colour and pattern of decor. Locations that become dementia friendly will receive a logo to display (in a shop window for example), so that individuals and carers can easily identify.

Surrey County Council’s approach to supporting people with dementia and their carers is a ‘whole systems’ approach, with local clinical leadership driving the design of local services.

Information on local dementia services can be obtained through Wellbeing Centres (see page xx). These centres offer a professional presence in the form of the dementia navigators and, in some venues, peer support groups and day opportunities. They can also provide opportunities to test telecare equipment to help keep people safe in their homes (see page xx for more information on telecare).