Baptistcare Dryandra embraces best practice

Reducing the use of antipsychotic medications for responsive behaviours

DTA offers the Medication Management Consultancy along with a range of other consultancies and educational services through Tailored Training Packages (TTPs) which aim to bring about sustainable change within organisations to improve the wellbeing of people living with dementia and the staff who care for them.

Most people living with dementia will experience responsive behaviours at some point in their journey.

Antipsychotic medications have traditionally been used to alleviate responsive behaviours in residential aged care, despite limited effectiveness and increased risk of injury and death.

Medication management consultancy Dementia Training Australia DTA

Dryandra staff members

There is an increasing body of evidence that addressing responsive behaviours with non-pharmaceutical (non-drug) approaches is at least as effective as using antipsychotic medications.

Most clinical guidelines now recommend that antipsychotic medications should only be considered when all non-medication approaches have failed, and only for severe symptoms of aggression and agitation.

However, many residential aged care sites report difficulties in adhering to these guidelines due to barriers including a lack of knowledge, processes and commitment to change.

The Dementia Training Australia (DTA) Medication Management Consultancy (MMC) is an evidence-based service that aims to embed knowledge and processes to optimise the use of antipsychotic medications for responsive behaviours.

The ultimate goal of the consultancy is to contribute to reducing the number of antipsychotic medications used to support people with responsive behaviours, ensuring that these medications are prescribed at the lowest possible dose for the shortest possible time, if they are used at all.

Baptistcare’s Dryandra aged care facility in Kellerberrin, a regional community in Western Australia, successfully completed the first DTA MMC in August 2018. After the MMC, there was a marked improvement in the alignment of care with current principles of best practice in management of antipsychotic medications.

Kate Fulford, Medication Management Consultant at DTA, worked alongside staff members at Dryandra throughout the consultancy and is very pleased with the outcome.

It has been really exciting working with Baptistcare Dryandra, they are the first residential aged care facility to commence a medication management consultancy and the staff were very enthusiastic about improving their knowledge on the appropriate management of medications used to support people with dementia.

dementia reducing antipsychotic medications DTA

“Throughout the consultancy process it has been inspiring to observe the nursing and care staff grow in their capacity to be an integral part of the monitoring process of antipsychotic therapy, ultimately strengthening the adherence to best practice guidelines which has no doubt improved the quality of care for their residents.”

The consultancy aims to strengthen bonds between professions to utilise knowledge and skills from a wide range of people, and this is something the Dryandra staff have embraced and excelled in.

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Working together to improve wellbeing for people with dementia and the staff who care for them.

Our TTPs are designed to bring about sustainable change within organisations to improve the wellbeing of people living with dementia and the staff who care for them.