New home to deliver best of dementia care in response to community needs

Responding to community needs, Baptcare’s Wyndham Lodge community will open its newly redeveloped ‘Bill Featherstone House Memory Support Unit’ for people with early to middle stage dementia, complementing the existing residential aged care facility.

Research conducted by Alzheimer’s Australia has projected that Wyndham will have the second highest prevalence of dementia in Victoria by 2050 owing to its rapid population growth and corresponding rise in the number of senior residents.

The Memory Support Unitt is specifically designed for people whose care needs mean that they can’t live independently, but who still retain sufficient memory to allow a strong level of functionality with support.

“The innovative model of care at Bill Featherstone House delivers the best of care, one that is centred on family and home, and incorporates normal routines of life to give residents choice and control. The objective is focused on a philosophy of choice, participation, involvement and collective decision-making,” said Lindon Le Griffon, Divisional Operations Manager at Baptcare.

“For people living with dementia, generic residential aged care is not always the most appropriate setting so we are attempting to provide a very different service offering with this unit.”

“People who move into residential aged care are often happy to hand over cooking, cleaning, and other household activities to the provider because of age or frailty. But for some people with Alzheimer’s, at a certain point in their dementia journey, the inability to be involved in all the activities of daily living can be demoralising and often not understood by the person. At the Memory Support Unit, we can deliver better outcomes for residents with these needs,” Mr Le Griffon continued.

Ms Joyce Hoyle, new resident at Bill Featherstone House described the home as a welcoming place that is both sensible and practical. “There are little things in here like the paintings on the wall or a baby’s bassinet that remind you of home. It is not just some fancy place, it’s real and that is what people are searching for.”

Participation in activities of daily living will be a key feature of the Unit’s care program while engagement programs will be tailored to the needs of residents. Staff will support residents with day-to-day activities such as meal preparation, tidying rooms and other normal household activities to allow them to continue life in a normalised setting, giving people a sense of ownership and independence.

Family involvement is key to this model. Among the eligibility criteria for residents to gain placement, the resident’s family or friends must be willing to be involved in supporting their loved one for at least two hours per week. Families will be critical in care delivery and are expected to be an active part of the community within Bill Featherstone House. Their input is invaluable to making this work.

Contact: Annemarie Watt

Phone: 0428063664