A poll conducted from May 20 to June 2 by Police1.com asked:
Have you received training to recognize the signs of and appropriately respond to a person with dementia?
Of the 515 who participated, 51% responded “Yes” and 49% responded “No.”
The Alzheimer’s Association hopes to change that by providing free online training.
As a first responder, it’s critical to understand how to best approach situations involving someone with Alzheimer’s disease. Approaching Alzheimer’s: First Responder Training program is a free, online training that features high-quality content in an interactive format, developed by the Alzheimer’s Association with input from first responders. It can be accessed:
- Anytime of day, or night, accommodating for shift work and new hires
- By anyone with access to a computer and the internet, making it easy to take from home or work
To promote the training within your department or agency, use this downloadable flyer to distribute or post in your breakroom.
The training also includes a downloadable tip sheet, Quick Tips for First Responders. This handy page can be folded to fit in a visor or emergency kit, and includes helpful phone numbers and strategies to help a person with dementia and their family.
Other resources for families in your community:
- Safety information: Taking measures to ensure safety at all times can help prevent injuries, and it can help people with dementia feel relaxed and less overwhelmed. The Alzheimer’s Association safety section provides valuable information on safety in the home, driving and other safety issues.
- MedicAlert® with 24/7 Wandering Support: A nationwide emergency response service for individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia who wander or have a medical emergency.
Alzheimer’s Navigator®: Alzheimer’s Association’s Alzheimer’s Navigator is an innovative online tool designed specifically for families, to create a personalized action plan and linking them to information, support and local resources.
For more information on the MedicAlert Law Enforcement Agency Portal (LEAP), click here. The LEAP program provides FREE enrollment into the MedicAlert + Safe Return program for people living with dementia who are registered through a law enforcement agency’s online portal.
More information on the free first responder course
The course has an interactive map that allows you to explore topics relevant to your role. Once you have completed all topics, you can print a certificate celebrating that you are Ready to Respond! Training topics include:
- Briefing (Dementia Overview)
- Abuse and Neglect
- Disaster Response
Sign up here.
For a video explaining the program, watch this YouTube video.
Unsplash photo by Huy Phan