Symposium: Innovative training approaches to improve care for people with dementia

Authors: Murphy, J., Board, M. and Heward, M.

Conference: 15th United Kingdom Dementia Congress

Dates: 10-12 November 2020


To improve the delivery of care for people with dementia, new and effective training for all health and social care staff is needed, a recommendation outlined in government policy. At this symposium discover how our innovative approaches including simulation and virtual reality have enabled staff to transform the care they provide.

Presenter 1 - Dr Michelle Heward Dementia Education And Learning Through Simulation 2 (DEALTS2) is an innovative, low cost, high impact dementia education toolkit. We were commissioned by Health Education England to develop the toolkit and evaluate the impact on practice ( The toolkit is being used nationally to support the delivery of dementia training across England, and was shortlisted for ‘Best Dementia Training Initiative 2018’ at the National Dementia Care Awards. At the workshop you will learn how putting yourself into the ‘shoes of a person with dementia’ can enhance your understanding of how dementia impacts on the person.

Presenter 2 - Dr Michele Board In collaboration with Alzheimer’s Research UK (ARUK) we have been evaluating the effectiveness of their Virtual Reality app ‘A Walk Through Dementia’ (AWTD) ( The app aims to help people think beyond memory loss and gain a fully immersive insight into the varied symptoms people with dementia can experience in everyday life. Based on this evaluation we have developed a workbook available from ARUK and then we were commissioned by Health Education England to develop an online learning resource. During the workshop you will be able to view the app and learning resources available and discuss the evaluation.

Presenter 3 - Professor Jane Murphy Ensuring people living with dementia receive appropriate nutrition and hydration is complex and can present challenges for staff and family carers. Informed by our research, we have developed a toolkit to provide freely available resources (film, workbook, leaflet and guide to deliver person-centred nutritional care. The toolkit has been used all over the UK and overseas as far afield as Australia, and is the winner of the 2019 Complete Nutrition Award for Nutrition Resource of the Year. At the workshop, you will learn how to better manage some of the key nutrition-related problems that people living with dementia face.

Source: Manual