Services for Australians with dementia are set to receive a boost with the establishment of a National Quality Dementia Care Network.
In a world first, the network brings together researchers, care providers and consumers to improve the uptake of research findings in dementia care.
The network is being coordinated by Alzheimer’s Australia with $support from the JO & JR Wicking Trust which has granted over $2 million to the project and Bupa which has provided an additional $810,000.
The initiative will oversee the development of new education and training initiatives, policy recommendations and best practice procedures for dementia care.
Alzheimer’s Australia CEO, Glenn Rees said the network was unique because it actively involved consumers in all aspects of knowledge transfer.
“The quality of dementia care in Australia will only improve if there is greater collaboration between consumers and those with a stake in research, service delivery, training and clinical experience,” he said.
The director of the Primary Dementia Collaborative Research Centre, Professor Henry Brodaty welcomed the establishment of the network, saying studies suggest that it takes up to 17 years for research evidence to reach clinical practice.
“A great deal is now known about what constitutes good dementia care,” said Professor Brodaty.
“The problem is to translate this knowledge to care workers and the network will provide an important and new opportunity for achieving this.”
It is expected that the network will begin operating midway through next year.