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International Dementia Conference
International Dementia Conference
International Dementia Conference

Session 2 - Day 2

Session Program

1:10 pm
For an increasing proportion of us, the ability to remain in our own homes as we age depends on having a family member who will provide support and care, particularly for those of us who will develop dementia. 

Family, ‘informal’ or unpaid carers are an increasingly visible section of our community. They have been recognised by successive governments as providing an essential service. If unpaid care were to cease, service systems would not cope, nor would the national budget.  Rethinking carer services and supports is well overdue in Australia. Could supports could be reconfigured into more individualised and effective services?  

This presentation will explore caring styles and propose that evidence-informed, individualised, proactive services not only support carers, but may benefit those whom they support and make good financial sense for the country. 
1:45 pm
Tomorrow might be better – chaired by Marie Alford, Head of Business Development HammondCare

Tully Smyth was just 14 years old when her mother was diagnosed with younger onset dementia. Now 32, Tully is a social media influencer, journalist, podcast host and a previous contestant on Big Brother Australia.
Thinking back, Tully remembers signs much earlier than when she received her diagnosis, which was put down to stress or being over-worked. It began with the little things. But it was her changes in personality that were the most drastic. Being angry all the time and quick to start an argument or lose her temper.  

The stigma around what a diagnosis of dementia means affected Tully’s life as a teenager. She stopped inviting friends over after school, desperate to keep the family secret and embarrassed about what they might see.

As her dementia progressed these feelings moved to sadness with the family battling to cope and no support network. After placing Kay in a couple of care homes that were not suitable due to distance to travel to visit regularly, or the care environment, Kay finally settled at a care home Hammondville in New South Wales.

In July last year, after a 23-year-long battle, Tully’s beautiful mum, Kay, passed away.  Tully will be sharing her experiences and says “Tomorrow might be better but it also might not, and that's okay. Because we're all in this together.”

Join us to hear Tully’s story.
2:35 pm
Chaired by Leigh Hatcher, Broadcast Journalist and Author

Considerable debate has taken place about the form and function of “nursing” in dementia and aged care. This discussion usually comes with an assumption that nurse equals compassionate people who provide quality clinical care and are excellent managers. But do  these skills and qualities go together and can we expect all aged care nurses to provide this? Is the word nurse being used to shorthand the care, compassion and knowledge we want in the support of older citizens and is less about the discipline of nursing? With the number of nurses decreasing internationally what is the future role of nursing in dementia care, where is nursing knowledge and skill most valuable. When does a person with dementia need the skills of a nurse and when do they need a person?

An international panel of nurses will debate and consider this most important of questions as we consider the future of nursing in dementia care. 

Other Suggested Sessions

1:30 pm
Plenary Room
Session 2 - Day 1

11:00 am
Plenary Room
Opening Session - Day 2

11:00 am
Plenary Room
Opening Session - Day 1

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