Scenario 2: Responding to questions & needs instantly incl. changed behaviours
Dementia is complex, and the care workers, your clients and their carers will ask you a broad range of complicated ad hoc questions
Instead of Googling online, which can be overwhelming and risk prone, you can easily search and share with the PRO for practical, quality and up-to-date suggestions and solutions instantly, including care strategies, system navigation, referrals and more
Additional suggestions are also included below on how you can respond to and support your clients and carers on changed behaviours more easily, especially using the PECT model
Note, ad hoc questions can also appear as "complaints" from families.
You can watch the video below to learn more.
See transcript here.
Tasks to complete
Think of a specific question or challenge or "complaint" that a client or carer has asked you, such as “refusing to see a doctor”, “validation therapy”, “refuse to get dressed”, “hallucination”, etc.
Click on the “All info” tab. In the search bar, type in a few key words relating to the question, e.g. “refusing doctor”, “sundowning”, “repetitive phone calls”, “validation therapy”, “refuse dressing”, “hallucination” etc.
Click on the Section to view the information within, including videos, tips, suggestions and more.
Have a conversation with the client or carer about the information, and if relevant, share it with them via the PRO.
Our customers say they spend more than 4x the amount of time answering questions and addressing challenges from their clients and carers impacted by dementia.
This is understandable as dementia is complex and touches on all aspects of life
However, there isn't an easy-to-use one-stop-shop to help respond to all those questions or needs.
As a result, care professionals often resort to internet searches to look for specific answers, which can be overwhelming, confusing and open you up to risks as not all information is quality.
Instead, you can easily search within My Dementia Companion PRO and action your to-do list instantly.
How to use the PRO to help?
(0 min 45 sec)
To access the “Search” feature, simple log into the PRO app. The search bar is at the top.
In the “All info” tab, you can search the entire dementia journey within the PRO app, including system navigation, care strategies, subsidies, aids and equipment, and more
A client may be showing the early signs of memory loss and the family is wondering where they should go for advice. You can simply type in keywords such as “diagnosis where” (other keywords include, “professionals diagnosis” or memory clinic” or similar terms), and click on the result “Professionals involved in the person’s diagnosis, including clinics” and then a Section will open in the right column with a link to a directory of specialist memory clinics, which will open in a new window. Remember to close that window to return to the PRO app
Another example is that a care worker may ask you about taxi vouchers or subsidies for a client. In the search bar, you can type “taxi” and click on “Taxi subsidy scheme” in your respective state. Note, the PRO doesn’t just tell you about the taxi subsidy scheme, it will link you to take action, such as the forms to complete or phone number to call.
Power of attorney often comes up as a common question and it can be very confusing. You can simply search keywords such as “attorney” (other keywords include “power of attorney” or similar terms), then your specific state’s resources will appear to guide you, such as EPOA, Guardianship and Administrator. Note, you can change the default State and Territory under “More” and “Settings”
Another example is a family carer is worried about sending their loved one to respite for the first time. They call you to ask you what they need to do? You can type in keywords such as “prepare for respite (other keywords include, respite plan” or other similar terms). Click on “Planning for your respite and making the most from it”. The Section will include resources and a handbook on how to plan and make the most from the respite experience
After reviewing the resources within your search result, you can share them via the “Share” feature. More details on this are available in a separate tutorial.
Mark Done once you have relayed this information to your client.
Because dementia is so complex, we have curated the journey into bite-sized Sections. This means that Sections are often related to each other. So after viewing specific Section that you have searched, you can click on the Section heading to collapse it, and then you can review other related Sections above or below
For example, if you refer a client to get the "carer supplement", be sure to check if other Sections may also be relevant, such as Companion card in VIC, Carer Cared Program in VIC and others.
The PRO’s Section headings can be used like a checklist for you to provide comprehensive support for your clients and their carers to live independently.
Changed behaviours and daily challenges
(4 min 01 sec)
Just a note on managing changed behaviours and daily challenges.
When searching for a changed behaviour such as such as repetition, wandering, eating difficulties and others, you will notice they are mostly grouped within an overarching Section containing overview information, such as "Repetition related changes and challenges", followed by specific challenges.
The suggestions and tips in each specific challenge may be useful, we also highly recommend you view the overarching Section.
Using the PECT model to investigate unmet needs
(4 min 38 sec)
It also includes a part on investigating the underlying causes and developing specific care strategies.
This is the most popular Section in our app, which many carers have said is very useful. It uses a PECT model to help you uncover unmet needs that may be triggering a specific changed behavior:
P refers to Personal needs.
E stands for the Environment
C for Communication and
T for Tasks or activities.
This is because dementia reduces a person's ability to communicate needs, such as hunger, boredom, pain or missing someone.
So, you can make a difference by getting into the habit of regularly using the PECT model to identify and then address those needs.
wandering the house looking for food but not being able to find the kitchen, which is a Personal and Environmental need. You can label the pantry or establish a regular eating routine to help.
Or withdrawing from activities in response to pain. This is a Personal need, so you need to properly manage the pain.
Aggression is often in response to frustration with being unable to do something, such as get dressed, because there are too many steps involved, choosing the colour of clothing, selecting the right thickness of clothing, having the right combination, doing the buttons and more. So, you can help by selecting the clothes for them and they only have to put it on. This is an example of an unmet Task need.
Or repetitively calling out for a deceased person because they miss them. This is a Personal and Communication need, which you can help by asking them about their memories of that person, or using a photo album to address this need.
(6 min 39 sec)
After a search, don’t forget to clear the search field to return to other features such as “List” or “Care Plan” feature.
It is always better to prevent a changed behaviour than manage it after it has happened. Please also use the app’s “List”, “Care Plan” and “Journey” features to put the appropriate strategies in place and empower the person and their carers with the skills to mitigations the risk of developing the changed behaviours ahead of time.
We constantly improve our content and search feature. If you can’t find information on a particular subject or need, please contact us via the “Question?” button, chat icon or “Suggestions” link within each Section
All information is evidence based, quality and up-to-date because we only curate resources from reputable experts and organisations.
The PRO app should be used as a prompt and does not replace your professional training and judgement. Please review the content and if anything is missing, please let us know.
Clicking on a heading can open or collapse that section, or you can click on the “Collapse/ Expand All” button to collapse or expand all Sections if you have too many Sections open. This can help you to re-orientate yourself with the Topic.
Thank you for tuning in and we are looking forward to continuing to support you in the amazing work that you do!
Don’t forget to reach out to us if you have any questions.
The scenarios do not cover all of the content in My Dementia Companion, nor all the ways it could be used. Please keep exploring!
Contact us if you have any questions via the “Questions?” button or the chat icon within the tool, email us or sms/call us 0406 257 729 during business hours.