Below are key findings that have emerged from the HSE and Genio Dementia Programme.

No barriers, possible for all    

If the right supports are put in place, it is possible to support people at all stages of dementia in their own community for longer periods.

  • Projects within the HSE & Genio Dementia Programme have to date supported people at all stages of dementia in community settings. Research over a three year period by the National University of Ireland Galway (NUIG) found that approximately 30% of people with dementia supported by the projects in the community had a very high level of need.
  • Preliminary findings from an in-depth study by the Genio Research Team on the provision of Intensive Home Care Packages for people with dementia found that a personalised approach was highly valued by people with dementia and their families as support was more tailored to their needs (Findings pending).
Better outcomes, better lives

Personalised supports achieve better outcomes

  • Evaluation by NUIG (2012-2015) across four large community projects found that as the projects progressed, a more personalised approach to service provision was highly valued by people with dementia and their families. An evaluation of alternative respite options (Cahill et al, 2014) in two community based projects found that high levels of satisfaction were expressed by both the person with dementia and their family carers. In particular, the flexibility and responsiveness of the service were highly valued and the individualised tailored activities for each individual was of further benefit.
  • The participants particularly valued the dementia support workers and their training, skills and professionalism were noted as being very important factors in contributing to the positive evaluation of the initiative.
  • Evaluation of the telecare/technological supports (Work Research Centre, 2016) supplied to people with dementia indicated that these supports work best and produce best outcomes when tailored or personalised to each person’s needs and wishes.
  • Evaluations of two community-based projects found that people with advanced or complex dementia/health issues who can be supported to remain at home have better outcomes (Publications pending).
Reduced costs and cost savings    

Community-based care can be more cost-effective than long-term care options for most people.

  • An evaluation of costs in four large community-based projects supported by the HSE and Genio was undertaken by NUIG over four years of operation.
  • The study focused particularly on those people with dementia who were on the ‘boundary of care’ between home and residential care. Almost a third (32%) of the 568 people with dementia in the study were judged to be on this boundary and the cost of caring for them in the community was significantly less than the cost of care in a residential setting would be. 
  • The maximum potential saving associated with the community-based element of the HSE and Genio Dementia programme was €3,169,561 for the people on the boundary of care.
  • The report concludes that “significant numbers of people with dementia could potentially be supported to live at home for longer as a result of the HSE & Genio Dementia Programme, thus resulting in savings to the exchequer when comparisons are made between public expenditure in the community and in residential care."
Co-ordinated response across community-based and specialised services achieve improved outcomes for people with dementia

Co-ordination between community-based and specialised services and/or acute hospitals, as well as involving the wider community is key to improving the experience of people with dementia.

  • Three acute hospitals and two community based projects have created dedicated care pathways for acute hospital settings. This involves a far greater degree of liaison between the community and hospital based services. 
  • Preliminary results from an evaluation of all three hospital based projects undertaken by Trinity College Dublin indicate that the various improvements made across the hospitals (dementia awareness, staff training, quiet areas, signposting, emphasising nutrition and hydration, personalised assessments for discharge and homecare support packages provided in the community) have improved the experience of people with dementia in acute hospital settings (Findings forthcoming).
  • Findings (Genio 2016) indicate that dementia consortia utilised by projects supported through the HSE & Genio Dementia Programme have demonstrated the significant and lasting changes that can be made to existing services and establishing new initiatives locally. A dementia consortium is a group of organisations, agencies and individuals who come together around the agreed goal of supporting people with dementia to live well in their local community.

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