The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey has sponsored a YouTube channel that features educational videos for caregivers on Alzheimer's disease and dementia. A video titled "Circle of Harmony" is accompanied by a workbook.
New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez said the state will spend $100,000 to train family caregivers who help people with Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia. Martinez said 50 new teachers will get Alzheimer's caregiver training, and the goal is to triple the number of Alzheimer's caregivers in the state.
Alzheimer's Australia Vic is working with Opaque Multimedia to develop a virtual reality game for Alzheimer's disease patients. The initial version involves a virtual forest, which allows dementia patients to have control over their environment as they move, creating a total sensory experience. A simulation allows caregivers to experience virtual dementia.
A study review released by Alzheimer's Disease International found that malnutrition may affect up to half of people with dementia. Alzheimer's Society policy chief George McNamara said malnutrition can be avoided when health care providers monitor patient weight and nutrition. "We also need to educate caregivers and care home staff, as dementia training can be the difference between someone starving and living well with the condition," McNamara said.
The number of dependent seniors could increase from 101 million in 2010 to 277 million in 2050, and half may have dementia, according to the World Alzheimer's 2013 report. The report forecasts a deepening shortage of caregivers and makes recommendations to improve dementia care, better train caregivers, monitor health care quality, and integrate health care and social systems.
Good Shepherd Medical Center in Pendleton, Ore., offers a Virtual Dementia Tour to give caregivers an idea of what it is like to live with dementia. Health educator Tammy Martin said the tour takes caregivers out of their comfort zone and afterward many have more compassion for patients.