Whilst good practice exists in many areas across Scotland, this publication describes the methodology and findings of work undertaken between January and March 2017 in four wards in NHS Grampian’s Aberdeen Royal Infirmary that have been recognised as delivering particularly good practice in relation to the 10 Dementia Care Actions. The four wards which this review was based on are in the Department of Medicine for the Elderly (DOME) – wards 102 (the Geriatric Assessment Unit), 303, 304 and 306. The aim of this work was to identify and share the critical success factors associated with improved outcomes for people with dementia, their carers, friends, family and staff in acute care. Using an appreciative inquiry approach, a range of activities were undertaken, including a multidisciplinary workshop, conversations with staff, stakeholder questionnaires, data collection and thematic analysis using the 10 Dementia Care Actions as a framework.

Whilst not all acute sites are alike, it is hoped that the learning from this work will be of interest to other inpatient sites in NHS Grampian and across Scotland, and staff will use the learning to identify opportunities to improve the care and experience for people and people with dementia in their own areas.

Key learning points:

  • staff delivering care in acute wards should have dementia-specific knowledge and skills in line with the Promoting Excellence framework
  • investment in developing an infrastructure of dementia leadership in acute care, for example Dementia Champions, Best Practice in Dementia Care Nurses, Nurse and Allied Health Profession Dementia Consultants, and
  • building quality improvement capacity, capability and infrastructure so that quality improvement becomes part of everyday business, and where possible, supported by dedicated improvement advisor support.

In response to these key learning points, Focus on Dementia will continue to support services as they implement the acute care commitment of Scotland’s national dementia strategies through:

  • developing and testing improvement and learning resources
  • providing advice and guidance in relation to quality improvement approaches, and
  • the continued identification and spread of good practice across Scotland.

Please click here to download the full report (PDF)

For further information please contact Lynn Flannigan - lynn.flannigan@nhs.net