The government has announced a $3 million funding boost to support the national programs for training the aged care workforce and supporting facilities to better manage dementia-related behaviours.
Minister for Aged Care and Senior Australians Richard Colbeck and Minister for Health Greg Hunt jointly announced the funding on Thursday during Dementia Action Week, which aims to create awareness and start the conversation about discrimination and dementia.
The $3 million boost in funding for Dementia Training Australia and Dementia Services Australia adds to $40 million the Federal Government recently announced for other initiatives to improve dementia care.
Dementia Training Australia, led by the University of Wollongong to provide the national dementia training program, has received $1 million to improve dementia care in the primary, acute and aged care sector, a spokesperson from the Department of Health told Australian Ageing Agenda.
The funding will support DTA continue to provide professional development training programs to general practitioners, nurses and allied health professionals.
DTA will also provide:
- accredited dementia care vocational training courses
- tailored onsite training for aged care providers
- an online training portal for staff to undertake web-based training
- consultancies in areas including medication management and pain management.
The remaining $2 million has been allocated to Dementia Support Australia, which is led by HammondCare, for its Dementia Behaviour Management Advisory Service.
DBMAS supports health and aged care providers and informal carers when Behavioural and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia affect a person’s care.
The funding will support DBMAS to provide free services and assessments for the person living with dementia, including for clinical support, information and advice and mentoring and clinical supervision.
Minister for Aged Care and Senior Australians Richard Colbeck encourages all Australians to get involved in a conversation about dementia.
“Dementia is increasingly prevalent in Australia, and in the coming years most of us will be touched by this condition in some way,” Mr Colbeck said.
Minister for Health Greg Hunt said the announcement demonstrates the government’s commitment to developing dementia research.
“As our population continues to live longer we need to keep pace by undertaking research, and developing technology and tools to manage the effects of this condition,” Mr Hunt said.
The $40 million funding includes:
- $4 million, announced in the 2018-19 budget, for three projects to trial innovative technology for people living with dementia to link into community supports and mange medicine
- $5 million to trial a new way to determine pain among people living with dementia
- $31 million over three years to Dementia Australia to fund the National Dementia Support Program, which provides education, services and resources to people living with dementia.
Dementia Action Week is an initiative run by Dementia Australia which runs from 16-22 September and includes World Alzheimer’s Day on 21 September. This year’s theme is ‘Dementia doesn’t discriminate. Do you?’.
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