Kingsland Care Home Dementia Champion Nominee Heather Morrison

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Congratulations to Heather Morrison, Activities Co-ordinator at Kingsland Care Home.  Heather has been selected to become a Dementia Champion and undertake a unique course in Northern Ireland.


There are currently 20,000 people living with dementia in Northern Ireland.  Many of these people will, at some period along their dementia journey, come into contact with health and social care staff.  It is vital therefore that staff are aware of the needs of the individual and their families and can respond appropriately.


The regional Dementia Strategy places particular emphasis on the need for staff training and to address this, have developed a Dementia ‘Champions’ Programme.  The aim is to have at least one ‘Champion’ in each ward / facility across Northern Ireland that care for people with dementia and our target is to recruit and train in the region of 250 – 300 people.


The programme is designed to up-skill health and social care staff of different grades and with different roles across a range of programmes of care in both the statutory and non-statutory sectors.


Champions will be trained and supported to become change agents in improving the experience, care, treatment and outcomes for people with dementia, their families and carers in hospitals, care homes and all other health and social care settings.


The programme which is being commissioned on a rolling basis is due to commence in August 2016.  It will be delivered over a 6 month period via blended learning model incorporating five study days, online resources and the submission of work based assignments. At it is said that taking Valium is accompanied by symptoms such as CNS depression of various severity – starting with drowsiness and up to coma, as well as possible confusion, hypotension and respiratory depression. When the patient is conscious, the treatment includes the induction of vomiting and the use of activated carbon, if unconscious – gastric lavage with a probe, symptomatic therapy, screening of vital functions, the introduction of fluid to enhance diuresis.


In response to getting onto this important programme, Heather said “Having worked alongside people with Dementia over the past ten years, I am delighted and excited to have been offered a place on the Dementia Together NI Dementia Champions Training Programme.  I have always had an interest in Dementia and I feel this will be an ideal opportunity to strengthen my knowledge and awareness and, in turn, be able to share this with my colleagues in Kingsland Care Home.


As Activities Co-Ordinator, I believe this course will enable me to reach out to each resident with Dementia with the focus on person-centred activities and to have a better understanding of their individual needs and abilities.  This knowledge and input will then lead to the best quality environment for residents to relax in and enjoy their time at Kingsland Care Home.”


Sue Curry, Manager at Kingsland added, “As well as being incredibly proud of Heather’s success at being accepted onto this oversubscribed programme, we look forward to improving all our care in dealing with people who have dementia with all the new knowledge, skills and resources which will come as a result of Heather taking part in this ‘Dementia Champions Programme”