April 17, 2023 – 8:01 AM
Due to bureaucracy, care providers who arrange dementia care are not always able to find the right help for clients. This is evident from new research among more than two hundred so-called case managers.
Case managers are an essential and crucial link in dementia care. Also in realizing meaningful daily activities for people with dementia. Case managers need mandate, time and trust to do their job and should not be hindered by unnecessary bureaucracy. Municipalities can play an active role in this by closely linking up case management and implementation of the Social Support Act, including indication assessment.
Locally and regionally there are many opportunities for meaningful daily activities. New activities are sometimes not necessarily necessary. In addition to classic daytime activities (often organized by care or welfare providers), all municipalities offer a wide range of leisure activities in the neighbourhood, in their own village or city or in the region. In conversations with companies, social entrepreneurs or neighborhood initiatives, it also appears that they are willing to contribute. Sometimes these activities are not (specifically) designed for people with dementia, but they can be made suitable quite easily.
Underutilization of existing options for daytime activities is partly due to unfamiliarity with the range of formal and informal support staff. The range of options must be findable, clear and accessible to them. Citizen and neighborhood initiatives are important to involve in offering low-threshold daytime activities in the neighbourhood, but these initiatives want to retain as much autonomy as possible over their initiative with as little influence as possible from municipalities or welfare organisations.
Therefore, in the event of resistance, the municipality should talk to organizations about where the problem is and see if something can be done about it, for example by offering companies or organizations courses on dementia, providing professional guidance or relaxing the rules. Listen to parties who show resistance and try to look together at what they can and want to contribute to the much-needed innovation of the daytime activities and, if possible, make concrete agreements about this during contract negotiations. With this, municipalities can sometimes achieve a lot without too much extra financial resources.
Hans Alderliesten, Project leader & strategic advisor, Movisie.