Two Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust teams have had their work on dementia published in national health journals. Members of the Bristol Care Home Liaison Team have written an article titled 'Promoting positive practice in mental health liaison' which is published in the September/October 2013 issue of the Journal of Dementia Care.
The authors are occupational therapist Rebecca Higgins, mental health nurse Pam O'Hara and assistant psychologist Stuart Hughes (who has since left AWP).
The article is a reflection on the role of a mental health liaison team in long-term residential care for older people and highlights the value of occupational therapists in enhancing the variety of models, knowledge and approaches that are used as a team resource, further improving the quality of the service.
It also describes the use of the Newcastle model. This is a collaborative approach which ensures that all those who are working with a resident in the home, including managers, nurse, carers and ancillary staff are included in a process of viewing 'challenging behaviour' in dementia as a sign of an unmet need. Staff and the care home liaison team work togther to identify ways those needs might be met so having a positive effect on the person's behaviour. Ideas are more likely to be acted on, as all those involved share in devising the plan for intervention.
In addition to this, Marion Dixon, consultant clinical psychologist, and Liz Curtis, clinical psychologist, have their article 'Knowing and telling about dementia: supporting couples to go on together following diagnosis' published in the October edition of Clinical Psychology Forum.
The article is based on the work they do with couples and families in the Trust and on the training they have provided to memory service and other later life community staff working with people with dementia.