Celebrating 700 Dementia Champions in Scotland

National conference and graduation for Cohort 7 Dementia Champions

The number of Dementia Champions in Scotland will rise to over 700 today (Wednesday, 15 March 2017) as 102 NHS Scotland and social service staff graduate from the seventh cohort of the programme.  The programme, delivered by the University of the West of Scotland and Alzheimer Scotland, supports the development of Dementia Champions as change agents in improving the experience, care, treatment and outcomes for people with dementia, and their families and carers in acute general and community hospitals, and at the interface between hospital and community settings.

It also reflects the importance of Promoting Excellence – the educational framework developed by the SSSC and NHS Education for Scotland (NES) for all health and social service staff working with people with dementia, their families and carers.

Maureen Watt, Minister for Mental Health, Scottish Government, who will deliver a keynote address, said:

‘The Dementia Champions programme is a clear demonstration of the Scottish Government’s on-going commitment to ensuring people with dementia get the care and support they are entitled to in all care settings.

‘This initiative is an excellent example of developing a talented workforce whose learning and experience is invaluable to not only themselves and colleagues, but to people living with dementia, their families and carers. Joint investment with Alzheimer’s Scotland in Dementia Nurse Consultants across NHS Boards will continue to support this work.

‘My warmest congratulations to everybody today on completing this incredibly rewarding and important programme, which is another important step in increasing the capacity of our workforce in responding to dementia.’

Henry Simmons, Chief Executive, Alzheimer Scotland added:

‘Together with our partners we are transforming and improving the quality of care in our hospitals throughout Scotland. Today’s graduation gives us the chance to celebrate and recognise this new cohort of Dementia Champions, another group of well trained, skilled and highly motivated individuals who can join this force for change. Champions all share with us a deep desire to ensure that the best possible quality of care and support is always delivered to everyone with a dementia diagnosis and their families.

‘Those graduating today will help us maintain this momentum for change and we look forward to seeing the impact that their motivation, new ideas and determination will bring to improving the experience of people with dementia and their families. We wish them all well and offer our ongoing support and commitment to helping them achieve this goal.’

As well as the graduation ceremony and keynote speeches, a series of workshops and poster presentations will be on offer to delegates attending the conference, some led by Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Nurse Consultants and graduates from earlier Dementia Champions cohorts.

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