Dementia rehab programme wins prestigious award

NHS Dumfries & Galloway’s Occupational Therapy Home Based Memory Rehabilitation Programme was recognised as the Best Community Support Initiative at the prestigious Dementia Awards in Glasgow last Thursday.

The evidence-based occupational therapy early intervention programme for people with dementia aims to help people living with the condition to compensate for memory difficulties affecting their day to day lives. The programme, originally developed in Belfast, has been modified and piloted in NHS Dumfries and Galloway. So far the results have been very positive.

Occupational Therapist Emma Coutts works on the programme and has seen for herself how early intervention can help.

She said: “We are delighted to have won such an important award for the work we do with people living with dementia. The programme really helps people to develop strategies for dealing with memory issues and reduces the impact that these can have on day to day life.

“In one of the cases we have just reviewed, the gentleman is still using six of the 11 strategies for coping with memory loss one year on. He is less reliant on his wife and says he has found them very useful.”

Alison Groat, Specialist Occupational Therapist has been involved with the programme from the start and prepared the nomination for the Dementia Awards. She said: “It is great to be a part of a project that is offering practical help to people at such a stressful time. The work we do makes a real difference and the whole team really deserves this recognition.”