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Birmingham and Solihull Mental health NHS Foundation Trust
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Extra support for dementia carers launched in Dementia Action Week 

Published: 5/20/2019

Carers visiting the Juniper Centre in Moseley will be able to benefit from more support and advice on dementia thanks to­­ a new information sharing scheme that was launched today (21 May).

Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust (BSMHFT) has introduced the idea in response to feedback from carers and families of people who access specialist dementia services at the Trust.

The Trust’s library services have put together a trolley stocked with resources from local and national agencies as well as with reminiscence products to encourage patient-centred care. The PHILS (Providing Health Information and Library Services) trolley will be explained and introduced to carers in reception areas by trained volunteers. They will use their own lived experience to help other people access any support they require to help care for their loved ones with dementia.

The chosen materials follow national guidance issued The Alzheimer’s Society and is supported by Birmingham Libraries, who are stocking free to loan versions of any reference only books included on the trolley. A digital version of the resource will also be made available online in the future and, if successful, the scheme is expected to roll out to other sites around the city, including the Little Bromwich Centre near Small Heath. 

Sue Hartley, Executive Director of Nursing, BSMHFT said:

“Caring for a loved one with dementia is more of a challenge if you feel unsure where to go for extra support. This simple scheme provides a way forward for carers through speaking to people with lived experience as guides to the right sort of support and advice.”

Karen Wight, Outreach and e-resource Librarian, BSMHFT added:

“We know that carers need information that is easily accessible, current and in a wide range of formats. The PHILS trolley gets the key signposting material in the right place for carers and has that added extra human element to help them access the right assistance.”

Les Bloom, Carer and Volunteer said:

“I am sure the whole project will be a great success.  I am very proud to be in at the start. It's a brilliant initiative and will provide a valuable service to carers”.