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Devon carer leads way with person-centred approach to dementia care

Published: 4th March 2019 10:15


A DEVON care provider says it is leading the way when it comes to providing a person-centred care approach for its service users with dementia (March 2019). 


Guardian Homecare, which has offices in Brixham and Exeter, says it views service users with dementia as individuals rather than focusing on their illness or the abilities they may have lost.

Katie Jewell, who is a Regional Manager with Guardian Homecare, said: "We have lots of service users who have dementia and we feel the best way to support them is to take into consideration each individual's unique qualities, abilities, interests, preferences and needs instead of treating them as a collection of symptoms and behaviours to be controlled.

"Person-centred care also means treating individuals with dementia with dignity and respect. We encourage our care workers to understand service users' history, lifestyle, culture and preferences including their likes, dislikes, hobbies and interests."

As part of its approach Guardian Homecare also ensures its service users have the chance to try new things or take part in activities they enjoy. They're also provided with the opportunity to have conversations and relationships with other people.

Katie added: "Family, carers and the person with dementia, where possible, are always involved in developing a care plan based on person-centred care. Their knowledge and understanding of the person is extremely valuable to make sure the care plan is right for the individual.

"Many people with dementia have a fragile sense of self-worth; it's especially important that we continue to treat them with courtesy, however advanced their dementia. We train our carers to be kind and reassuring to the person they're caring for, never talk over their head as if they are not there, avoid scolding or criticising them and always look for the meaning behind their words, even if they don't seem to be making much sense. Whatever the detail of what they are saying, the person is usually trying to communicate how they feel.

"Although some symptoms of dementia are common to everyone, dementia affects each person in different ways.

"We all need to feel valued and respected and it is important for our service users with dementia to feel that they still have an important part to play in life. We strive to give encouragement, reassurance and support other family members to understand the person's needs and concerns."

Guardian Homecare delivers personalised home care supporting people wishing to stay living safely and comfortably in their own homes in south Devon.

It currently employs 140 carers and is searching for more honest and kind-hearted individuals to help add to its teams in the county.

Katie continued: "We are looking for new recruits to help make a difference within communities across south Devon by caring for individuals seeking extra support.

"Carers who join our team will help to provide domiciliary and live-in care as well as dementia care."

The large team of trained, specialist, care workers provide positive based outcomes and person centred care to people throughout south Devon.

"Being a carer is a really satisfying job and gives people the opportunity to create a worthwhile and long-term career for themselves."

Anyone interested in a position should call Guardian Homecare on 01803 853198 to request an application pack or drop in at its Drew Street branch in Brixham, or its Broadclyst office in Exeter, in March during normal office hours for an informal chat.

Guardian Homecare offers training and the opportunity for internal advancement. Anyone who joins the team is creating a career path using the different qualifications they can achieve.

New recruits are given free uniforms, access to national staff discount scheme for many major brands, as well as 28 days paid holiday, paid travel between calls and paid mileage.

Katie added: "Being dependable is key to this role as people will be looking after the needs of vulnerable adults. Applicants also need to be even-tempered and caring and must enjoy making a positive difference to people's lives.

"Being patient, able to cope with change and having the ability to display empathy and warmth are also essential."

Anyone wishing to find out more about Guardian Homecare and career in care, should call 01803 853198 or visit www.guardianhomecare.org.uk.

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