The Caring for Cognitive Impairment campaign is about providing better outcomes and experiences for patients with cognitive impairment in hospitals, and for their loved ones and staff who care for them. By improving our knowledge and care practices, we can reduce the risk of harm in hospital.
The campaign will help hospitals prepare for the new cognitive impairment items in the NSQHS Standards (second edition).
New cognitive impairment resources aligned to the second edition of the NSQHS Standards are now available on the Commission’s website. In 2014 the Commission developed three resources for managers, clinicians and consumers to help improve care of people with cognitive impairment. The resources for managers and clinicians have been revised and expanded to map to the second edition of the NSQHS Standards. The new consumer guide is currently being developed.
People with cognitive impairment in hospital are at increased risk of preventable complications. Cognitive impairment is common, but is often not identified, or it is dismissed or misdiagnosed. We may dismiss symptoms of delirium as a normal part of ageing, or as dementia, potentially preventing us from taking action. We may not understand what a person is experiencing, which increases their distress.
The first step to making a person’s stay safer is to understand the different forms of cognitive impairment, the people who are at risk, and what we need to be alert to.
People with cognitive impairment in hospital are at increased risk of adverse events and preventable complications. We can minimise harm if we recognise cognitive impairment and act.
We can prevent delirium with the right response to those at risk, and we can ask families to help.
There are simple steps we can all take to keep people safe from the potential impact of cognitive impairment.
We can all make a difference.
This website has extensive resources to help.
Everyone who cares for people with cognitive impairment can join the campaign – people living with cognitive impairment, carers, family members and other support people, doctors, nurses, allied health professionals, health service managers, and care and support staff.
Champions are in hospitals, in primary health, in the community and in residential care.
As an individual, we can take action. Hospitals can put systems in place for better care. Be prepared for the National Safety and Quality Health Service (NSQHS) Standards (second edition).
Everyone has a role. Learn about cognitive impairment. Learn from others. Be part of the community making a difference.