Commitment to the care of people with dementia in general hospitals
In 2011, the RCN published a Commitment to the care of people with dementia in general hospitals which should be used as a guide to support the delivery of dignified care for people living with dementia and their families, within general hospital settings. The commitment is made up of five principles which form a shared commitment to improving care. Each principle is considered essential to ensure the appropriate delivery of care, and factors are identified which will support their delivery based on guidance and best practice. They are intended for all those people responsible for care, not just nursing staff, to help support improvements and make positive changes.
The RCN has developed new resources consisting of a 'how to guide' (PDF 552.8KB) and film to support the further implementation of its five principles for improving the quality of care. The film includes the perspectives of people with dementia, family carers and practitioners about hospital care. The ‘how to guide’ includes practical tools, best practice examples and guidance on delivering improvements.
Each section of the accompanying guide can be used independently to support learning, share ideas and encourage practitioners to transform the way care is delivered to people with dementia in hospital. In addition the guide provides a signpost to a range of resources available from the dementia pages of the RCN’s website and links to a gallery of best practice examples where you will find further information from those who contributed to the film, as well as other examples of how some hospitals have delivered change.
These resources can be used along with other initiatives that support innovation and improvement. It is recommended that staff teams use them to support the development of practice in a systematic way which demonstrates real benefits for patients, carers and staff. This requires dedicated leadership, development of shared action plans and evaluating outcomes, particularly patient experience.
The commitment has been informed by:
- findings from a survey of over 700 practitioners involved in the delivery of care
- findings from a survey of over 1,480 people with dementia and family carers/supporters about their experience of care
- input from a range of stakeholders, including colleagues from other royal colleges, voluntary organisations, professionals and service users
- contribution via the stakeholder event held at RCN Headquarters in June 2011
- national guidelines and campaigns to support better care for people living with dementia and their families.
Older people and people with dementia workshops
Transforming hospital care for older people and people with dementia: implementing RCN guidance and practical resources
These workshops are aimed at nurses working in hospitals and will introduce RCN guidance, toolkits and learning resources on: the commitment to people with dementia in hospital and safe staffing for older people’s wards. The workshops will help you gain the skills to develop plans for local implementation, service and practice development. The workshops are taking place across the UK in October, November and January 2013. For more information and online booking visit www.rcn.org.uk/OP2012. View the flyer (PDF 843KB) [see how to access PDF files].
We would like to thank the following organisations for their support:
The commitment has been developed as part of a dementia project supported by the Department of Health and the RCN Foundation, and from further contributions and support from the following organisations: Royal College of Physicians, Royal College of Psychiatrists, British Geriatric Society, College of Occupational Therapists, Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, Age UK, The Kings Fund, Dementia UK, NHS National End of Life Care Programme, College of Emergency Medicine, Alzheimer's Society and the National Council for Palliative Care and the Design Council.