Admiral Nurses provide vital help in dementia care

WHENAlan Chesney s wife, Vera, was diagnosed with Alzheimer s disease in April 2006 he was forced to retire to care for her, and had no idea where to turn for help, writes NAVTEJ JOHAL. Where are you supposed to look? You can t find dementia care in the

WHENAlan Chesney's wife, Vera, was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in April 2006 he was forced to retire to care for her, and had no idea where to turn for help, writes NAVTEJ JOHAL.

"Where are you supposed to look? You can't find dementia care in the Yellow Pages," Mr Chesney said.

"It's a full time occupation, and was a huge learning curve, but I realised I couldn't cope alone, even though it felt like I was admitting defeat."

Mr Chesney, 73, of Woodbridge Road, Dagenham, addressed the launch of the Admiral Nurse Service, at Barking Town Hall, on Thursday, which was attended by Mayor of Barking and Dagenham, Cllr Emmanuel Obasohan.


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Admiral Nurses specialise in dementia, working in the community to provide support for sufferers and their carers.

The two new nurses will work alongside the community mental health team for older people, based at the Broad Street Centre, Morland Street, Dagenham.

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They are supported by the national charity for dementia - which runs similar services across the country and provides nurses' training.

Mr Chesney, who was introduced to the scheme by Carers for Barking, said: "Our Admiral Nurse explained all the different phases of the illness to us really clearly. He gave us support, advice, and went out of his way for us.

"Vera has been in a care home now since June 2007 and she doesn't recognise me or know my name.

"This service will help people to cope, because there are a lot of people, like me, who are uneducated in this illness, and need advice to help them get through."

Stuart Marks, responsible for the delivery of older people's services in Barking and Dagenham, said: "We have a number of services in place for older people but we don't as yet work as well together as we should. Admiral Nurses will help us to continue to close these gaps and enable us to work better together."

To contact Barking and Dagenham Admiral Nurses call 0844 600 1016 or Admiral Nursing Direct on 0845 257 9406.

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