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Celebrating 700 Dementia Champions in Scotland


Media Release from NHS Education for Scotland, The Scottish Social Services Council, Alzheimer Scotland and Scottish Government

National conference and graduation for Cohort 7 Dementia Champions 

The number of Dementia Champions in Scotland will rise to over 700 on Wednesday as 102 NHSScotland and social service staff graduate from the seventh cohort of the programme.  The programme, delivered by the University of the West of Scotland and Alzheimer Scotland, supports the development of Dementia Champions as change agents in improving the experience, care, treatment and outcomes for people with dementia, and their families and carers in acute general and community hospitals, and at the interface between hospital and community settings.

It also reflects the importance of “Promoting Excellence” - the educational framework developed by NHS Education for Scotland (NES) and the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) for all health and social service staff working with people with dementia, their families and carers.

Maureen Watt, Minister for Mental Health, Scottish Government, who will deliver a keynote address, said:

“The Dementia Champions programme is a clear demonstration of the Scottish Government’s on-going commitment to ensuring people with dementia get the care and support they are entitled to in all care settings.

“This initiative is an excellent example of developing a talented workforce whose learning and experience is invaluable to not only themselves and colleagues, but to people living with dementia, their families and carers. Joint investment with Alzheimer’s Scotland in Dementia Nurse Consultants across NHS Boards will continue to support this work.

“My warmest congratulations to everybody today on completing this incredibly rewarding and important programme, which is another important step in increasing the capacity of our workforce in responding to dementia”.

Henry Simmons, Chief Executive, Alzheimer Scotland added:

“Together with our partners we are transforming and improving the quality of care in our hospitals throughout Scotland. Today’s graduation gives us the chance to celebrate and recognise this new cohort of Dementia Champions, another group of well trained, skilled and highly motivated individuals who can join this force for change. Champions all share with us a deep desire to ensure that the best possible quality of care and support is always delivered to everyone with a dementia diagnosis and their families.

“Those graduating today will help us maintain this momentum for change and we look forward to seeing the impact that their motivation, new ideas and determination will bring to improving the experience of people with dementia and their families. We wish them all well and offer our ongoing support and commitment to helping them achieve this goal.”

In addition to the graduation ceremony and keynote speeches, a series of workshops and poster presentations will be on offer to delegates attending the conference, some led by Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Nurse Consultants and graduates from earlier Dementia Champions cohorts.


Reference: PR2017-004

Further Information From

Mary-Jo O'Brien, Corporate Communications, NES, email tel. 07785 384393 or 0131 656 3213.

Elaine Nixon, PR Manager, Alzheimer Scotland, email tel. 0131 514 0013 or 07900 498223.

Lorraine Wakefield, Senior Communications Officer, Scottish Social Services Council, email tel. 01382 317922.

Note to Editors
NHS Education for Scotland (NES) is a national special health board working to provide education, training and workforce development for those who work in and with NHSScotland

The Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) is the regulator for the social service workforce in Scotland. Our work means the people of Scotland can count on social services being provided by a trusted, skilled and confident workforce

The University of the West of Scotland and Alzheimer Scotland deliver the Dementia Champions programme on behalf of NHS Education for Scotland (NES) and the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC).

Taking part in the Dementia Champions Programme provides a range of blended learning opportunities, work based learning and leadership development.

Two case studies from graduates of Cohort 7 are available as follows:
• Susie Fraser, Advanced Specialist Orthotist, Orthotic & Prosthetic Practice Placement Lead, NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde.
• Janet Morrison, Staff Nurse, Dr Gray’s Hospital, Elgin, NHS Grampian.