Alzheimer’s disease is the 5th leading cause of death for those over 65 years of age, as cited by the Alzheimer’s Association. Sadly, of the 10 leading causes of death, it is the only one that can’t be prevented, delayed or cured. Not only does it wreak havoc on the person with Alzheimer’s or dementia, the toll on caregivers, whether they are paid or unpaid, is dramatic.
There are no national standards for dementia education and requirements vary from state to state. To bring the importance of caregiver education and training to the forefront, the National Council of Certified Dementia Practitioners (NCCDP) is dedicating the week of February 14–21 as NCCDP Alzheimer’s and Dementia Staff Education Week.
The NCCDP recommends a minimum of eight hours of dementia education with additional education on advances, ideas and culture change provided throughout the year. It stresses the importance delivering education in a face-to-face, interactive classroom environment. To assist in providing this much-needed training, the NCCDP offers a free downloadable tool kit, including PowerPoint in-services on many topics, which can be accessed through March 1.
Other features in the tool kit include:
- pre- and post-tests, handouts, evaluations and certificates for the in-services;
- letters to the Editor promoting your program; and
- resources, websites and more.
In addition to the tool kit, the NCCDP offers a training program for Certified Dementia Care Manager because many dementia unit managers admit they have little training for that position.
Take advantage of this opportunity to help your staff provide competent, knowledgeable, compassionate care and support to your residents with Alzheimer’s or dementia.