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When medicine is not the best option - Dementia in Asia

05 Jan 2015 8:20 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

80,000 people in SG will have Dementia by 2030. I went to visit De Hogeweyk two months ago in Amsterdam. its a wonderful environment that is very costly to build and operate, but the people living there are happy and the staff are happy and they attract a regular stream of committed volunteers. The benefits come in terms of reduced medications, lower staff turnover, lesser incidences of aggressive behaviors associated with living with Dementia. Whilst the first instincts of a lot of people is that such a facility is too expensive to built and it can't be done, maybe we just need to open our minds a little more, and explore what can be done. Just because we have built health and aged care facilities in a certain way in the last 100 years, doesn't mean we have to continue building them that way in future. We often don't think about such issues until our loved ones are put in that situation. For someone living with Dementia, their reality and ours is different, and what makes they happy is just what De Hogeweyk has achieved. I met with the founders, and for them and all their staff, seeing their loved ones cared for in such an environment brings such relief and comfort. Its a home where they would feel assured to have their loved ones living there. Pic attached was taken with one of the clients who lives there, she volunteers with pushing the lolly trolley every afternoon accompanied with a volunteer. Free lollies, most importantly, smiles all around from fellow neighbours and staff. If happiness was a KPI, perhaps the aged care world would be a little different.

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