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Dementia care village to be piloted by MOH

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Author: Ravi Philemon

Dementia care village will provide a safe, home-like environment where residents are assisted to live independently

On behalf of the Ministry of Health (MOH), the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) has launched a site at Gibraltar Crescent for sale by public tender, to pilot a new residential care community concept for persons with dementia. The dementia care village is part of ongoing efforts to improve the quality of life of persons with dementia and broaden the care and residential options available to them.

Dementia Care VillagePilot of Dementia Care Village

The dementia care village will be specially designed to provide a safe, home-like environment where residents are assisted to live independently. It will provide tailored services and programmes to create meaningful participation and social interactions among its residents.

Through collaboration with nearby community partners, the village is also expected to provide better access to supporting services and amenities in the wider community for persons with dementia and their families.

As a new residential option catering to individuals with varying stages of dementia, this pilot complements the home-based care and dementia day care services available today. We hope that the pilot will offer insights into market demand for such facilities and the community needs of persons with dementia, which will contribute to the development of suitable dementia care models in the future.

Site Attributes for Dementia Care Village

Located near Sembawang Park, the site comprises a cluster of 10 State bungalows. The site’s location and layout will provide a conducive environment for persons with dementia. The pilot dementia care village could also present opportunities for the successful tenderer and community partners to collaborate on active ageing programmes and provide other eldercare services for residents. The lease will be for 30 years.

Details of Tender for Dementia Care Village

URA said that a Concept & Price Revenue tender will be adopted to evaluate the tenders received for the sale site at Gibraltar Crescent to ensure that the selected concept proposal aligns with the vision of the dementia care village.

Under this system, tenderers are required to submit their concept proposals and tender prices separately. The concept proposals will be first evaluated against a set of criteria specified in the tender. The criteria include an assessment of the suitability of the proposed overall model of care for persons with dementia, as well as the quality of the care programmes and services. Only concept proposals that are shortlisted will proceed to the second stage for evaluation, which will be based on price only. The site will then be awarded to the tenderer with the highest bid price among those with acceptable concept proposals.

The tender for Dementia Care Village will close at 12 noon on 19 November 2019.

A Dementia Care Village in Netherlands, De Hogeweyk, is often lifted up as the gold standard for dementia care. De Hogeweyk is a gated model village which is designed specifically as a pioneering care facility for elderly people with dementia.

The benefit of using all-day reminiscence therapy at Hogewey, compared to traditional nursing homes, is that the residents with dementia are more active and require less medication.  Carers, doctors and nurses work around the clock to provide the 152 residents the necessary 24-hour care.

The Hogewey complex is set out like a village with a town square, supermarket, hairdressing salon, theatre, pub, café-restaurant—as well as the twenty-three houses themselves. In 2018 4 houses were added to The Hogeweyk. Each house reflects a style that is common to, and familiar for, the six or seven people who live in that house.

The doctors, nurses and carers aim to make the experience as real as possible to the residents. Residents shop at the supermarket and assist with preparing and cooking as they would at home. The carers wear normal daytime clothing rather than clinical clothing and fit into a role that the dementia sufferers are likely to be comfortable with; in the working class households the carers are seen to be neighbours or carers, while in the aristocratic/upper class setting, the nurses act akin to servants.

The living styles have different types of music playing, significantly varied interior design, food and methods of table setting. Residents in each house have their own large bedroom and meet with other residents to share the living room, kitchen and dining room. There are no locks on the doors, and residents are free to walk or cycle around the village, including choosing to visit the supermarket or cafe.

The dementia care village in Netherlands employs 250 staff.

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