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Specialised Dementia Care Wing at The Queenslea Claremont

The Queenslea Aged Care offers a boutique, 10 room Memory Support wing (MSU) dedicated to residents who require a more specialised approach to care that caters for the specific needs of people living with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Named Avalon wing, the goal of the MSU is to overcome any of the losses associated with dementia. The supportive physical and social environment of the wing enables our residents to live well, despite their diagnosis.

How does Avalon differ to our other small households at The Queenslea?

They say that for people with dementia “Everything I can’t keep in my mind, I need in my environment…”

Therefore the physical environment is set up to enable and empower our residents. The physical space of Avalon is laid out in a different manner to our other wings.

Avalon Memory Support Unit is smaller, with only 10 rooms to allow for a more personalised approach and a higher level of support staff to resident ratio. This makes this unique wing not too busy or noisy which can have adverse effects on people living with dementia.

Use of memory aids like labels, signage and name badges are used to allay any potential anxieties. Easy access to a secure outdoor courtyard to calm people and to enable environmental change, plus the use of activity boxes / stations and interactive walls, guided by our dementia trained care staff, gives our residents meaningful activities to partake in.

The social environment is established to ensure a stable, calm environment for our residents. We ensure staff in Avalon Memory Support Unit are familiar, well trained and supportive, offering just the right level of support and care that is reflective of our residents needs and abilities.

There is a core team of dementia-trained staff, who work a minimum of 3 shifts per week to provide consistency for our residents. This stability improves support for our residents as staff develop a sound knowledge of each resident and trust and friendships can be formed.

Who does the MSU cater to?

Dementia typically has a gradual onset, is progressive and irreversible. The course of dementia is often characterised as occurring in three stages:

  • Mild or early-stage dementia

Deficits are evident in a number of areas such as memory and personal care, but the person can still function with minimal assistance

  • Moderate or middle-stage dementia

Deficits become more obvious and severe, and increasing levels of assistance are required to help the person maintain their functioning.

  • Severe or late-stage dementia

Characterised by almost total dependence on care and supervision by others, no longer mobile.

At The Queenslea’s memory support Unit, Avalon, we cater to residents at moderate stage of dementia. The other stages may be safely cared for in our other, general population wings*. To discuss which of our residential care options best suits your loved ones needs, please phone our care team on (08) 6280 1900.

*We are unable to accommodate residents who display aggressive or dangerous behaviours.

What is the Care Model at Avalon Memory Support Unit?

Our care model at Avalon is based on the principles of person centered care and the Montessori approach, which aligns with Oryx’s Company values of vitality, life, empathy, advocacy and dignity.

Professor Thomas Kitwood (Gerontologist) was the first in his field to study people diagnosed with dementia and see beyond their diagnosis. Kitwood’s findings challenged old culture of care by advocating for a new one. One that would be built on compassion.

Tom Kitwood identified a number of psychological and social human needs. These human needs must be met for us all in order to maintain a good sense of wellbeing. Kitwood developed the idea of Person Centred Care and showed that when caring and supporting people with dementia we must remember six psychological needs;

  1. Love – To love and be loved, this basic need never stops. Oryx staff accepts our residents for who they are and recognise that behaviours are not their fault, they as a result of the changes in their brains.
  2. Comfort – We ensure all residents are clean and well-groomed and are free from pain.  We assure resident’s rooms are familiar and comfortable. Buffet meals allows residents to choose what they would like to eat.
  3. Identity – We address our residents by their preferred name and assist with dressing residents how they love to be dressed – makeup , jewellery etc we ensure residents are able to choose what they would like to wear and do during the day with personalised activities that interests them. We have each residents personal stories completed prior to admission to Avalon so staff know our residents before we even meet and we keep a short snap shot of each resident in their room.
  4. Occupation – Having a purpose in life is essential for everybody. We ensure this is continued at The Queenslea’s memory support unit. We establish roles or chores to enable residents to feel productive and valued. Families are encouraged to bring in their loved one’s hobbies or to continue to take them to church, sport, shopping, etc
  5. Inclusion – A feeling of belonging. There is a strong sense of community in Avalon, with every resident included and consulted in decisions that affect them.
  6. Attachment – Familiar, regular and well trained staff. Lots of social interaction Bus trips, and outings. Residents Family and friends are welcome and encouraged to visit.

Everyone has these needs and when we care for someone who is living with dementia, we need to ensure that we take time to fulfil these needs and be mindful of them.

What is the acceptance & admission process?

Our dedicated admissions coordinator will help guide you through the process.

Before accepting a resident, our clinical team must review a current ACAT and medication list and meet your loved one, in your home, to assess suitability. If a place is offered to your loved one, you will receive a welcome and information pack to help you prepare for admission. We recommend family members to set-up their loved ones room with familiar and personal belongings. We request an “All about Me” document to be filled in prior to admission so that we can understand as much as possible about your loved one prior to them joining our family. Our specialist team are here to guide you every step of the way to ensure a smooth transition.

The Queenslea’s Memory Support Unit in Claremont is now accepting enquiries for new residents. Please contact us on (08) 6280 1900 to discuss your specific care needs or click here to book a tour online.