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Hospice to host play for Dementia Awareness Week

21 May 2018
  • Brian Daniels rehearsing Don't Leave Me Now

Dementia Awareness Week begins today, and Isabel Hospice in Hertfordshire is hosting a play to draw people’s attention to the condition.

Dementia is one of the biggest public challenges facing the current generation, however it has struggled to be given the same degree of end of life provision as other life limiting conditions such as cancer.

Isabel Hospice has built palliative care provision for those living with dementia into its long term strategy. Helen Miller, the hospice’s Education Specialist leading on Dementia and Learning Disabilities, has worked for Isabel for eight years, initially as a Clinical Nurse Specialist. She explains:

“Our aim is to enable hospice dementia care to be more widely understood and accessed across our community of eastern Hertfordshire. So, as part of Dementia Awareness Week, we are delighted to be presenting a play, free to the public and health professionals, by Brian Daniels. It explores the impact of early onset dementia and family life. It tackles the themes of “where does love end and duty begin?” and asks the question, “does it?”

Brian Daniels is award winning playwright, and his play Don’t Leave Me Now has been endorsed by major charities including Dementia UK, The Alzheimer’s Society, Dementia Pathfinders, Cruse Bereavement Care and Hospice UK.

Elizabeth Paske, Director of Clinical Services, said:

“Helen and the education team are fantastic at igniting the passion for dementia care and helping the wider community understand that dementia care affects everyone. The work has had a twofold impact, firstly through education both within the hospice and providing it to external organisations, and secondly ensuring that Isabel Hospice is a dementia-friendly organisation itself.”

“The hospice has been in collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Society, Carers in Herts, Age UK and Hertfordshire Library Services. A bespoke education day was devised called ‘Walking Alongside Dementia’ which was rolled out to all community and hospital staff in Hertfordshire and West Essex. It was the first education open day of its kind in the region and since then 11 sessions have been run with 183 people attending. Demand continues, and we intend to help as many people as possible to live well in line with our ethos, Living Well with Isabel.”

This play is free and open to anyone including members of the public and all health and social care professionals. The event will also include afternoon tea and a post-show discussion with the audience.

For more information visit Isabel Hospice

Dementia Awareness Week  runs till May 27

See more articles in Community engagement

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