Why a professional should choose the service
- Memory services are recommended as the single point of referral for those with a possible diagnosis of dementia. The provision of a specialist service ensures that those with dementia have a correct diagnosis and that other medical causes of memory loss are considered. For those diagnosed with dementia the memory service provides access to the full range of diagnostic and post diagnostic therapeutic services to support quality of life.
- The memory service is ageless, in that we see clients aged 65 and over, but also have a smaller team of skilled practitioners who specialise in the assessment, diagnosis and support of early onset dementias within the team.
- The memory service is a multi-disciplinary service including consultant psychiatrists, memory nurses, liaison nurses, occupational therapists, a psychologist and support workers. In addition, we work closely alongside the Admiral Nurses, social services and third sector voluntary services such as Making Space, to provide a comprehensive service for our clients.
- The memory service is currently working towards MSNAP accreditation, and is currently undergoing a transformation process to streamline our service to provide early access to specialist assessment and diagnosis for those with memory problems.
All appropriate referrals made through the single point of access can expect:
- An appointment for a CT or MRI scan.
- An initial assessment: This is an hour long (approximately) appointment to discuss any concerns around memory, physical and mental health history, current difficulties, medication, and day to day activities. This assessment is carried out by a nurse or occupational therapist. It helps to gather information which is then used by a doctor (psychiatrist) to identify what is causing the difficulties with memory.
- Diagnostic appointment: A further appointment is then made with the consultant psychiatrist for a diagnosis. Depending on the reasons for memory difficulties, the consultant may prescribe a medication called an “acetyl cholinesterase inhibitor”. This medication may help to slow down the process of worsening memory.
- A nurse will be allocated to the service user to monitor the effects of the medication until a suitable therapeutic dose is reached and tolerated.
- There is an opportunity after speaking with the consultant to speak with a member of Making Space who can offer support and advice.
- Duty line: Telephone support, advice and signposting.
- Triage to ensure referral to appropriate service
- Comprehensive assessment
- Possible treatment, depending on cause of memory problems.
- Review, monitoring and assessment of medication
- Support, advice and signposting to other agencies who may be able to help further