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Annual Carers Survey Launched by Welsh Ambulance

If you look after a family member or friend, then the Welsh Ambulance Service wants to hear from you during August as part of its Carers Survey 2020.

Caring for anybody with a physical or mental disability, a person with substance misuse issues or providing extra help as someone grows older can be extremely testing and impact on the carer’s own life and wellbeing.

The Ambulance Service would love to hear your experiences of caring — especially if you’ve had cause to use any of their services such as emergency care response, falls team, non-emergency patient transport or community engagement work.

Executive Director of Quality and Nursing for Welsh Ambulance, Claire Roche said: “Gathering personal experiences from carers is vital to us and will help build greater understanding and shape how we meet their needs in the future.’

Claire Roche,
Executive Director of Quality & Nursing,
WAST

“I would urge anybody in a care role to make their voice heard and let us know via the survey how they have found our response when they have needed to call.”

Run by the Patient Experience and Community Involvement (PECI) team, the survey is in its second year.

Matt James from the PECI team added: “Reaching out to those who are caring for loved ones can be a lifeline.’

“To provide a safe forum and support network is essential in helping people feel understood and that they are not alone.

“Our annual survey will help us to further understand the issues faced by people we may not physically be able to reach.”

Follow the work Welsh Ambulance do with carers on Twitter @WelshAmbPIH.

To take the survey visit https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/1_WASTCarers2020/

Welsh Ambulance Service’s Work with Dementia Community Celebrated in TV Documentary

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The Welsh Ambulance Service’s work with the dementia community is being celebrated in a new documentary series which explores the ground-breaking advances being made to help people with the disease.

A link to the docu-series available at the end of this article.

Hope in the Age of Dementia examines how the Trust has enlisted the support of people with dementia to help shape and deliver training across the workforce.

The programme, a joint venture by the ITN Productions and Alzheimer’s Disease International, also hears from leaders in the field of neuroscience, research and drug discovery.

Alison Johnstone, the Welsh Ambulance Service’s Programme Manager for Dementia, said: “For people living with dementia, using an ambulance – whether it’s for an emergency or a planned trip – can often be a stressful experience.

Alison Johnstone,
Programme Manager for Dementia, WAST,
Appearing on Hope in the Age of Dementia

“We’re really trying to understand the needs of people living with dementia so that we can strengthen and improve our services in future.’

“What’s been wonderful is that people living with dementia are involved in that work and are front and centre delivering that training with us, and for us.”

People with dementia have also been invited into the Trust’s Clinical Contact Centres to see how 999 calls are triaged, as well as to ambulance stations to offer a view on how dementia-friendly they find the vehicles, equipment and uniforms.

Linda Willis, of Newport, who was diagnosed with dementia aged 61, has been among those involved in the work.

“It’s given me such a confidence boost, I can’t praise the ambulance service enough,” she said.

“They actually listen to what people with dementia want and need from the service, and have delivered it, and that means so much.”

A still from ITN Productions and Alzheimer’s Disease International’s new documentary series, ‘Hope in the Age of Dementia’

Dementia affects more than 50 million people worldwide and this number is expected to more than triple by 2050.

Funding from Welsh Government has helped make much of the Trust’s work a reality.

Vaughan Gething, Minister for Health and Social Services, said: “The Welsh Ambulance Service’s innovative work to improve the experiences of people living with dementia exemplifies the aims set out in our Dementia Action Plan for Wales, recognising the different ways in which people living with dementia require support.

“This co-productive approach to developing and delivering training shows the value of listening to people living with dementia and rightly ensures services are person-centred.”
Claire Roche, the Trust’s Executive Director of Quality and Nursing, added: “Knowing how to recognise dementia and respond appropriately can make all the difference to a patient’s support, care and treatment.

“That’s why we’re so committed to hearing first-hand about their experience, so that we can make our services even better for them.

“This programme is an incredible opportunity for the Welsh Ambulance Service to showcase our dementia work and promote the exciting dementia programme we have in Wales.”  

Hope in the Age of Dementia can be viewed here.