Ashleigh Moss has worked in dementia care for approximately 10 years as a nurse and more recently as the Ward Manager. Keen to offer the best possible care experience for patients and their families, Ashleigh attended the DSDC’s Intersection of Dementia + Design Training.
Coming from a nursing background, I was unsure as to what to expect from this course, what I could contribute and its relevance to my practice. However, the structure, content and engagement of this course afforded me such an in-depth insight into practicalities, issues, benefits of redesigning, creating a therapeutic environment from a number of perspectives. This included insights from a number of professionals attending.
The course covered a number of aspects relevant to environmental design and gave me a systematic way of looking at the built environment. The course facilitators, presentations and the contributions of the participants gave me a number of tools and information that can guide our understanding of what we needed to change, and how that change could be accomplished even with financial limitations.
At ward level I was able to transfer the extensive evidence based knowledge, practical tools and best practice guidance in reviewing and assessing our current environment. People with dementia require a conducive environment, which is easy to navigate and understand, if they are to continue to pursue their way of life and make the most of their current abilities. The context of the course helped us critically evaluate our surroundings, the ways in which we operate and make informed, financially viable choices to change and improve the lives of those currently in our care.
We have created an environment which helps patients find their way about, the improved layout and design has helped reduce levels of confusion and frustration as the layout is purposeful. I am excited to further develop our ward and keep in contact with Stirling University as I believe they offer such invaluable courses, practical information and advice. Together we can help to change the lives of those living with dementia, and help to give them a voice.
For more information about the Intersection of Dementia + Design check out the DSDC design training page here.
~ Ashleigh Moss, Ward Manager