Derek* was referred to the Oaks Care Home for a nursing dementia placement in May 2019. His diagnosis was vascular dementia, basal cell carcinoma, delirium, asthma, recurrent UTIs and constipation. He had an indwelling catheter to manage his urinary incontinence, and was also incontinent of faeces.
Derek was 78 years old and had been assessed as requiring a dementia nursing placement as he displayed confusion, disorientation and had a history of distressed reactions, particularly with personal care.
The registered nurses and staff on the dementia nursing unit at the Oaks completed a comprehensive care plan based on risk assessments, including Derek’s mental capacity, which was reviewed on a daily basis following admission.
On admission, Derek was solitary, underweight and unsteady on his feet. The staff team were able to identify that given support, time and by using clear communication, Derek would be able to regain some independence and perform simple life skills, including mobilising more freely, feeding himself and requiring less support to manage his personal hygiene.
Achieving positive outcomes
The regained independence resulted in a reduction in Derek’s distress levels and he was able to identify his needs and wishes more clearly. This led to him spending less time in his room and he was observed to be eating and drinking better, including gaining 4.9kg in 6 weeks.
The staff prompted and encouraged Derek to also get involved with social activities within the Oaks, and he was observed to be developing social relationships with other residents. Derek even got involved with playing Bingo, attending coffee club and movie afternoons. This seemed to improve his confidence, which in turn, improved his ability to communicate.
Six weeks after his admission, Derek’s placement was reviewed, and the decision was reached that due to the improvements in his overall condition, Derek no longer required nursing care and his needs would be better met in a residential setting.
This positive outcome is a direct reflection of the skills and compassion shown by the staff at Oaks Care Home and is a perfect example of how providing person-centred care can enhance quality of life.
*Name has been changed to maintain confidentiality.