Museums are dementia experts

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Museums service is the first organisation to provide Tier 2 dementia training to health and social care professionals 

National Museums Liverpool has become the first organisation to pilot a ‘Tier 2’ dementia training programme within professional health and social care settings across the North West of England.

Commissioned by Health Education England working across the North West, House of Memories, National Museums Liverpool’s dementia awareness programme, successfully worked with health and social care partners in the region, and developed effective resources for delivering and cascading Tier 2 dementia skills, as outlined in the Dementia Core Skills Education and Training Framework.

A recently-published report details the achievements of the museums-led Train the Trainer programme, which focused on a person-centred approach to provide health and social care professionals with practical tools, techniques and learning outcomes to enable them to confidently engage, support and communicate effectively with people living with dementia.

The report is available here:

Macaila Finch, Programme Manager - Education Commissioning, Health Education England, working across the North West, said:

“I was introduced to the work of National Museums Liverpool in 2012 and was struck by how emotive and empathetic their approach was, placing the person living with dementia at the heart of their training, and acknowledging that an individual’s personal history and memory is of huge value and significance.

“It might be considered an unusual step to bring in a museum service to provide training on a health matter to those already working in medical-orientated backgrounds. However, the success of this pilot has demonstrated that the House of Memories training is universal and has been extremely effective in allowing those attending the programme to look at dementia from a different angle, and adapt their approach to supporting people living with dementia going forwards.”

The House of Memories team developed and piloted the programme between November 2015 and April 2016 in partnership with four regional delivery partners; Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, and PSS (Person Shaped Support), Liverpool.

The evaluation report demonstrates positive outcomes and strategic strengths in the delivery of the training for person-centred dementia care, and identifies a social return on investment (SROI) of £1 : £19.06, reflecting the impact of the training on dementia awareness, standards of care and personal and professional development of the health and social care sector training participants.

After attending the training, 97% of participants indicated they understood the principles of person-centred care and 100% of participants reported they understood what living well with dementia is, and the importance of value of promoting independence.

Carol Rogers, Executive Director or Education and Visitors at National Museums Liverpool, said:

“The new House of Memories Tier 2 training programme is the next exciting step in our journey. We are most grateful to our partners who offered valuable guidance and support. Our aim is to cascade the House of Memories Tier 2 across the UK to ensure that National Museums Liverpool continues to deliver innovative and museum-led training and resources for health and social care professionals.”

The finalised Train the Trainer licensed model will be available for roll out in 2017/18. 

Notes to Editors

About National Museums Liverpool

National Museums Liverpool comprises eight venues, including some of the most visited museums in England outside of London. Our collections are among the most important and varied in Europe and contain everything from Impressionist paintings and rare beetles to a lifejacket from the Titanic. We attract more than 2.8 million visitors annually. Our venues are the Museum of Liverpool, World Museum, the Walker Art Gallery, Merseyside Maritime Museum, International Slavery Museum, Seized! (UK Border Force National Museum), Sudley House and the Lady Lever Art Gallery. 

About House of Memories

House of Memories has been running at the Museum of Liverpool since 2012, training more than 10,000 carers across England to date. Part of the programme includes the award-winning My House of Memories app; a digital app, designed in consultation with people living with dementia and their carers, which was launched at the House of Commons in 2014.

House of Memories has received recognition from NHS England North West for their Learning Together in Health and Social Care Award 2013, won the 2014 Museums & Heritage award for Best Educational Initiative, was Highly Commended at the 2014 Dementia Friends Awards in the National initiative category, and is cited as an example of best practice in the Museums Association’s vision for the impact of museums: Museums Change Lives. In 2015 House of Memories won the Best Dementia Friendly Partnership Working at the Alzheimer's Society's Dementia Friendly Awards.