People with dementia lose expressive and receptive language ability and become verbally disabled over time. Clinicians and caregivers rely heavily on language and open-ended questions to connect with patients, assess their needs, and intervene. Without intact language skills, people with dementia have difficulty connecting with others and making their needs known. This session will introduce curricula developed to teach learners from multiple disciplines how to connect, develop a relationship, and communicate with people who have dementia using both verbal and nonverbal skills. These skills are useful in the office, hospital, and PA/LTC setting. And they could potentially help clinicians (from physicians and therapists to CNAs) coach and counsel families about 1) what to expect, 2) how to avoid, and 3) how to respond to challenging situations in dementia care. The speakers will present a brief overview of our curricula and role play learner-coach interactions and skill assessment in this interactive session.
Describe how to connect and develop a relationship with a cognitive-impaired older adult.
Evaluate an individual’s ability to connect and develop a relationship with a cognitively-impaired older adult.
Identify a need or opportunity to develop a dementia care conversations curriculum in their home institutions.