Alzheimer’s and dementia training is vital for homecare workers

The Alzheimer’s Society dementia awareness campaign in Home Instead's headquarters

The Alzheimer’s Society has launched a campaign which highlights the lack of dementia training across homecare and calls for minimum standards of training for all homecare workers.

We strongly support the call from the Alzheimer’s Society. People with dementia and their families deserve the best possible care and support. This is often best delivered at home where the person feels most comfortable and secure. This is why at Home Instead we’ve long recognised the importance of quality training for our CAREGivers, particularly those who work with dementia and Alzheimer’s sufferers.

There are 750,000 people with dementia in the UK. By 2021 there will be over 940,000 people living with dementia and this will soar to 1.7 million by 2050.

These are not just statistics; they represent millions of families with loved ones who require special care, both at home and in nursing homes. That care needs to be delivered by people who are trained to understand the condition and are able to provide the specialist support required.

We are specialists in dementia and Alzheimer’s care and have put together our own bespoke City & Guilds accredited qualification with globally renowned experts. This qualification, along with our high quality training across all aspects of homecare, has also recently been recognised with a Princess Royal Training Award.

Our dementia care training ensures that our CAREGivers are able to maintain a safe environment, manage changing behaviour, provide nutritious meals, provide mind-stimulating activities, create social interaction and supervise daily activities.

CAREGivers also provide assistance with enhancing and restoring the simple pleasures of life, such as a walk in the park, a trip out in the car or spending time in the garden, as described by CAREGiver Helen McEntire in her blog for The Huffington Post. These care activities are proven to maximise abilities and independence.

Martin Jones, MD of Home Instead, said: “This new campaign from the Alzheimer’s Society and the findings in their investigation are a wake-up call to the Government and to homecare providers.

“I’m proud to say that ensuring our CAREGivers are trained to help clients with specialised needs is vital to Home Instead’s model of relationship-led care. We believe in care that meets the ‘Mum test’ – care you would want your own parent or loved one to receive. Delivering that standard is only possible through vigorous induction and training programmes.

“Training and development is embedded into our culture, from tailored induction sessions to bespoke qualifications such as our City & Guilds dementia qualification.

Former police sargeant and current part-time CAREgiver Keith Alldritt holds the title of CAREGiver of the Year

“We are honoured to be the first homecare provider to receive an inaugural Princess Royal Training Award. It shows that our approach to training truly demonstrates hallmarks of excellence.”

Keith Alldritt, a CAREGiver and our current CAREGiver of the Year said: “Home superb. It equips you with a range of tools and the strategies that you can try,Instead’s City & Guilds qualification took place over a number of weeks – it was to see what works best between you and your client.

“The training gave me an understanding of what to avoid doing, how to interact, and most importantly how, as a CAREGiver, to help best bring quality of life to people living with Alzheimer’s or dementia.”