Barnsley dementia service
The Trust’s dementia services in Barnsley provide a single point of access, for the assessment, diagnosis and treatment of people with memory problems in line with the NHS national dementia strategy.
The service is based at Kendray hospital and operates from Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm.
Our service offer and objectives
Problems with memory are not necessarily linked to dementia. Infections, intoxication and depression are some of the conditions that impact on what people remember.
Staff in the dementia service work closely with GPs and colleagues from the Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, providing a single point of access for referrals. They carry out detailed assessments to uncover the underlying causes of memory problems. In cases where an individual does have dementia, they may be helped by medication that slows the progress of the illness.
The team is led by a consultant nurse who offers expert clinical input and guidance.
Senior community dementia workers offer diagnostic assessment incorporating risk, ongoing evaluation and review of people’s needs to enable people to maintain their optimum independence at home.
When people are first diagnosed, we offer education and information to them and to their carers to help them make plans for the future.
They are supported by community dementia workers who provide further support in the later stages of illness, act as liaison to nursing and residential homes and navigate people through the range of support services available. Dementia support workers help people to live as well as possible with their dementia illness in their own communities.
In times of crisis, the service will support the rapid response team to help to maintain people in their own homes. They also arrange for people to be admitted to short stay settings where needed.
Our service aims to:
- Help people maintain a strong sense of self
- Enable people to cope with the emotional response to the diagnosis of dementia, including managing stress, anxiety and depression
- Help people maintain relationships and social networks
- Allow people to maintain employment for as long as possible for younger people with dementia
- Help people gain practical coping strategies to manage problems of memory loss
- Provide guidance and information to help people make choices and retain independence
- Enable people to continue to look after themselves, their finances and home with support where needed
- Management of risk while living life to the full
- Forward planning to ensure that care is delivered in the way that people want
How can I access the memory service?
Most people need to see their GP in the first instance. Tell them what problems you are having; how long you have been having them and how often they occur. The doctor will arrange some routine tests and investigations to rule out any physical illness that may be causing your memory problems
These tests may involve:
- A sample of blood to test for different health conditions
- A CT scan to measure the activity in the brain. This is a painless procedure and requires you to remain very still whilst X-ray images are taken of your head.
- An ECG – to measure your heart activity. This is a painless procedure usually completed in your doctors surgery by a nurse
Your GP will also conduct a short memory test with you to measure the extent of your memory loss and talk to your family and/or carers with your permission, to discuss any changes they have noticed.
The district nurse, health visitor or community psychiatric nurse
These health professionals can refer you into the memory service and they will also be required to complete the memory tests and organise your physical tests through your GP.
Medical staff from Barnsley General hospital
Staff at Barnsley hospital can also refer you to the memory service following a stay in hospital. The tests and investigations required to rule out any physical causes will be done whilst you are in hospital and the memory nurse will contact you once you have been discharged so that they can visit you at home in familiar surroundings.
What happens after I have been referred to the memory service?
The memory service will contact you to arrange for a memory nurse to visit you at home. The visit usually takes around 90 minutes and will involve a general discussion with some questionnaires which the nurse will complete with you. The nurse will then discuss the results of the assessment visit with one of our consultant psychiatrists and a clinic appointment will be offered to you for diagnosis. If you would prefer to receive the diagnosis from the memory nurse, then they will visit you at home.
You will also be given an information file, which belongs to you and will contain all the information you require to meet your needs. Information will be added to this file as your needs change.
What can I expect at my appointment?
Your memory nurse will arrange to come and visit you and your family and/or carer following your appointment with the consultant. They will discuss your needs and how best they can be met. It may be that you are signposted to other services such as voluntary organisations or social services; or it may be that you require specialist support from within the memory services.
A care plan will be drawn up for you which will identify what care you can expect. This care plan will change as your needs change.
What can I expect after my diagnosis?
You will be followed up by the memory service to check your dementia needs. Your treatment and care plan will be amended as necessary.
We currently operate clinics from the following sites:
Oaks Park Primary Care Centre,
Apollo Court Medical Centre
Where can you get more information?
For more information about the Barnsley dementia service contact the team at:
For more information about dementia visit the Alzheimer’s society website www.alzheimers.org.uk
Page last updated on July 11th, 2013