Singapore

Commentary: The struggle to care for a loved one with dementia is a painful reality


EASING CAREGIVER BURDEN

Families typically merely surrender wanting for assist and depart their jobs, placed on a courageous face and find yourself burdened or burnt out.

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Today, one in 10 seniors above the age of 60 has dementia. This is set to rise to one in 5 by 2030. More of us will develop into caregivers, and we’re going to want more assist.

What can we do as a nation to assist caregivers?

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The most formidable merchandise on the want record for these of us on this subject is to scale up the residential choices for dementia sufferers to ease the heavy demand and to have higher choices than institutionalised care. But clearly there are some challenges in scaling these up rapidly, regardless of how forward-looking the plan.

In May final 12 months, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) introduced that no tender was given to Singapore’s first dementia village close to Sembawang Park.

The sole bid worth of $S15 million was too low, mentioned the URA on the time. The concept was to have a protected house setting for individuals with various levels of dementia.

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The incontrovertible fact that this didn’t get off the bottom exhibits that aged care policymakers have to discover a method to steadiness price, land lease size and demand in order that assisted dwelling will be commercially viable.

But this setback shouldn’t cease us from engaged on  “de-institutionalised care” villages like Hogeweyk, within the Netherlands. Here, PWDs are grouped and dwell in homes. They can roam freely and safely round, visiting the grocery store and interacting with one another at social actions to keep lively.

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But they’re intently monitored and cared for by full and part-time geriatric nurses and specialists, who “work” within the village as cashiers, grocery-store attendees and different roles in each day life.

RAMPING UP DEMENTIA-FRIENDLY COMMUNITIES

One step on this route has been Kampung Admiralty, the primary built-in group for the aged the place they’ll dwell in their very own flats and have entry to medical care for a price.

It is additionally heartening to see that there are outreach and schooling efforts inside the Woodlands group to assist seniors with dementia who’re misplaced. This consists of coaching volunteers and SMRT workers.

For PWDs dwelling alone or with their spouses, built-in communities like Kampung Admiralty can fill the hole within the meantime.


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