Dementia Post-Diagnostic Support enables and assists people with dementia and their families to live a life of their choosing throughout the continuum of dementia. Post-diagnostic supports include interventions, therapeutic treatments and activities that build on strength and abilities; helping to maintain and enhance quality of life (Post Diagnostic Support Project Steering Group, 2018)
There is a growing body of evidence which outlines the benefits of post-diagnostic support for people with dementia and those that support them, spanning psychosocial interventions, cognitive therapies, information, advice and peer support as well as psycho-education and emotional support. You can read a review of the evidence below.
Post Diagnostic Support for people with dementia and their family carers; a literature review (2018)
Staying connected, active and involved are also key part of living well with dementia. Post-diagnostic care and support should be tailored to each individual’s personal needs and preferences.
In 2019 the National Dementia Office ran a post-diagnostic grant scheme that supported the delivery of cognitive therapies and dementia psychoeducation across the country. An evaluation of the grant scheme outlined the benefit to individuals of these supports, enhancing wellbeing, increasing confidence, and impacting positively on staff delivering the programmes. You can read the full evaluation report below.
An Evaluation of the HSE's National Dementia Post-diagnostic Support Grant Scheme (2019)
If you are a health and social care professional interested in running a psychoeducation group the Next Steps Guidance document below offers useful information for content, resources and approach.
The Next Steps: Dementia Post-Diagnostic Support Guidance (2019)
Further details of other key dementia post-diagnostic services and supports can be accessed below
The dementia adviser support the person to navigate the health and social care system to ensure they receive the right support at the right time. They offer practical assistance, advice and information, as well as signposting the person and/or their families to appropriate services and supports enabling them to take control of their own lives. It is a personalised service, tailored to each individual.
Due to COVID 19 many dementia cafes have now gone online. Dementia Cafes are an important community resource for people living with dementia and family carers. They are a key part of the dementia post-diagnostic pathway. The dementia cafe provides an informal way to meet others living with dementia and to meet health and social care professionals.
Memory Technology Resource Rooms
Memory Technology Resource Rooms are for people who would like to know more about products and devices which can help manage memory difficulties. There are currently 27 Memory Technology Resource Rooms in Ireland. Each MTRR is staffed by an Occupational Therapist who will undertake an assessment and provide appropriate advice and assistance to people living with dementia and/or families/carers.
National Dementia Service Finder
The National Dementia Service Finder will help you find local dementia-specific services as well as accessible services for people living with dementia and family carers in the community. Services can be searched by local (county) or by type of service. It is a quick and efficient way to identify local resources.
There are a number of community and voluntary organisations that provide post-diagnostic support, they include the Alzheimer Society of Ireland, Western Alzheimer’s and Family Carers Ireland.