Person-centred care and dementia care mapping

Training an informed workforce to provide quality health and social 11 AcSS_MTC_Dementia_v2-page-001
care is a top priority for UK and international governments.

Person Centred Care (PCC) emphasises the importance of care which addresses the psychological and social aspects of living with dementia to ensure wellbeing.

First developed at the University of Bradford by Professor Tom Kitwood, PCC is now widely used in the UK and internationally, and synonymous with the transformation of health and social care for people living with dementia and their families.

The team at the University of Bradford, now led by Professor Murna Downs, have developed training in Person-Centred Care for the NHS and social care workforce, including major long term and domiciliary care providers. This has involved an empowering programme of train-the-trainer approaches including bespoke work books suitable for different care settings. The person-centred approach has now been embedded in Health Education England’s online modules: Introduction to person-centred care and Advanced practice in person-centred care. The University’s Doctoral Training Centre in Transitions in Dementia Care, funded by Alzheimer’s Society, ensures the development of future leaders in person-centred care research.

Recognising that much training fails to be embedded within everyday practice, Kitwood developed an observational tool and PCC practice development methodology called Dementia Care Mapping (DCM). DCM provides practitioners with a language to record the experience of care from the perspective of the person with dementia as well as evidence to use for action planning to improve that care.

A cluster trial conducted in Australia showed decreases in falls and agitation in care homes that used DCM and using it has also been shown to benefit staff morale and practice.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends DCM as an approach to practice development and the National Audit Office recommends it as a measure of quality of life. The University of Bradford has trained more than 4,000 practitioners in its use and has partnerships with organisation in more than 10 countries to deliver training in the method.

With the Care Quality Commission, a team at the University of Bradford developed the Short Observation Framework for Inspection, a derivative of DCM. This is used by inspectorates in England, Wales, Scotland, Australia and the Netherlands to capture the experience of people using services who may not be able to express themselves verbally.

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