Dementia is caused by a number of diseases that affect the brain. The most common is Alzheimer's, but diseases also include vascular dementia, dementia with Lewy bodies and Pick's disease.
There are around 800,000 people in the UK with dementia. It mainly affects people over the age of 65 and the likelihood of developing dementia increases significantly with age. However, it can affect younger people- there are at least 17,000 people in the UK who developed dementia before they were 65.
As a trust we need to increase our awareness of dementia so that we can better assist our service users and their carers. You might know someone who has a diagnosis of dementia, or have met other people presumed to have, and found fully supporting them a real challenge. Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust has signed up to the challenge of increasing dementia awareness across all our services and to continue efforts to raise improved awareness every year.
Part of our drive to make the trust more dementia friendly is encouraging all staff and members to become Dementia Friends. For more information on the national initiative please visit the Dementia Friends website.
Currently there are over 260 Dementia Friends at LCH, including: clinical staff, reception and front of house teams, the trust’s senior management team, the Safeguarding and Children who are Looked After Team, public members, Kippax Methodist Church members, Takeover Day participants (pupils and teachers), Scholes Beaver Scout group (a group of 6 ½ year olds!).
You can also become a Dementia Friend Champion. A Dementia Friend Champion is a volunteer who encourages others to make a positive difference to people living with dementia in their community. They do this by giving them information about the personal impact of dementia, and what they can do to help. If you have been Dementia Friend Trained and are interested in training to become a Dementia Friends Champion please visit their website here. If you are a member of LCH and are already a Champion or are planning to become one, please let the Membership team know.
For more information on Dementia Friends please visit the Dementia Friends website.
To represent the growing number of Dementia Friends we have in the trust so far – each forget me not in the image below represents 10 people.
If you are not a member of Leeds Community Healthcare but you would like to be kept up to date with the progress LCH are making with Dementia Friends, you can sign up at this link.
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