As the second wave of COVID continues and hospitals are again under great pressure, I wouldn’t expect anyone to be attempting to improve their dementia care; maintaining it is challenging enough just now. Nonetheless, beams of light shine through: the dementia specialist nurse who devises an on-the-hoof dementia care session she can deliver on a busy ward; the key new staff released for a couple of hours to participate in a live, on-screen, interactive dementia care tutorial; the nursing sister who steps forward to take on temporary dementia care leadership because she realises she’s currently in the best position to keep things afloat. I‘m privileged to witness these positives and I’m proud to be linked with these very special people.

If you have a loved one with dementia in hospital at the moment, please try to provide the hospital team with key information about caring for that person; the clearer the guidance you provide, the easier it is for them to get their care right. The person you speak to might well not be the person who’d normally be your contact, but they’ll be doing their best and your targeted input will be valuable. 

If you don’t feel the dementia care is right, do ask to speak to a dementia champion on the ward, or ask to speak to the dementia care lead; it’s important that you discuss any concerns – and if you’re pleased with the care, I know that any kind message from families means a huge amount to the teams right now.