This edition brings solutions to ensure no one faces dementia alone...
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LEARN, INSPIRE AND GROW
What keeps us inspired, is seeing the benefit our services have to people in the community. So, with September being #Dementia AwarenessMonth, and the theme being ‘together we ensure no one faces dementia alone’, we decided to feature one of our visitors to the @Solutions Centre – Kelvin & his wife Vicki. 

Whilst our @Solutions Centre has a focus on assistive technology, its applications go beyond just supporting physical impairment, and this month we thought we would look at how Kelvin benefited from his visit with Amber & Alex.

Kelvin is a DVA gold card holder and lives with his wife (Vicki) and grandson. More recently Kelvin received a diagnosis of Vascular Dementia and is experiencing early symptoms of the condition, although he is still fiercely independent.
VICKY, ALEX & KEVIN
Kelvin has been experiencing changes in his short term memory with some disorientation. Vicki is concerned for Kelvin’s safety in the home and community when alone. Both Kelvin & Vicki are concerned with how they will manage difficulties in the future as they’re aware the condition is progressive, and both want to remain living together at home in the community.

Kelvin & Vicki met with one of our Occupational Therapists, Alexandra Parkhouse, to begin discussions around planning for the future and designing an environment at home which would facilitate Kelvin’s maximum level of function in the long term and support Vicki’s role as a carer. Whilst Alex has also been to visit Kelvin & Vicki at home, the Solutions Centre was a safe place to begin difficult conversations about the future, as well as demonstrate products that may be of use now and in the future, helping to align expectations and goals. It was also an opportunity to introduce Kelvin & Vicki to other service providers in the WA disability community.
ALEX, KELVIN & VICKY
While Alex will continue to support Kelvin & Vicki in the future, to date she has been able to provide immediate support in the following areas:

📆 Provision of a Jadco day of the week calendar clock to assist short-term memory loss and orientation.

🏠 Provision of a falls detector pendant for use in the home to provide support when there is a falls risk. The pendant motion detector automatically triggers a response and doesn't have to rely on the user remembering to press the button in a crisis.

📶 Provision of a Go Trek GPS mobile alarm for use in the community and to help arrange support should Kelvin become disorientated or fall while out in the community alone.

🧾 Education on additional services and resources provided through DVA for both Kelvin and Vicki.

🚘 Began a conversation around driving, driving cessation and community independence.
Alex is also currently in the process of arranging a bathroom modification to provide a large level access shower, bearing in mind that Kelvin currently has an increased risk of falls & he may require shower assistance and assistive equipment in the future. By introducing and demonstrating some products while at the Solutions Centre, Kelvin & Vicki were better able to accept future requirements and more accepting of making changes for future planning.

Unfortunately we are unable to change the progressive nature of Kelvin’s and many other people’s diagnoses of Dementia. But we can change people’s experience – and this is what keeps us inspired! By making small changes, by planning ahead, and by ensuring Kelvin, Vicki and the many other people affected by Dementia are connected, we can make a big difference. A big thank you to Kelvin, Vicki & Alex for agreeing to share their story. 
CHOICES, CONNECTION AND SUPPORT
With September being Dementia Awareness Month and World Alzheimer’s Day on September 21st… this month we asked our followers on our socials what their go-to orientation aid was!

We received 67 responses in total with a strong preference of 54% for the Digital Orientation Clock!

So what are the considerations when prescribing an orientation aid to someone with a Dementia diagnosis and what really is the benefit? 
DIGITAL ORIENTATION CLOCK
What we know is that people with dementia are less likely to get confused or become distressed within an environment designed with their needs in mind and that is familiar. The orientation clock is aimed at reassuring people and orientating them to time, day, date and often place. The requirement for constant reassurance can become frustrating for both the carer and person living with cognitive decline, and while the orientation clock is suitable for people who have a range of cognitive abilities, we find ourselves often using these aids in the community with clients who have an early Dementia diagnosis.

For people with dementia, an orientation clock is
more than a convenience; it is an anchor.

We were curious… So we asked some of our pollers – why digital? 
The digital clock is simple, not overly complicated and doesn’t use abbreviations. There is a healthy balance with more important information like time and day in large letters/numbers, and less important information like month/day/year in small letters/numbers.

The Digital Orientation Clock is also customisable - it can be set to any of eight languages which is particularly important in dementia, where a person's childhood mother-tongue language tends to be retained the longest and is easiest to work with. The colour contrast and design can be customised for visual and cognitive preferences. You can also customise the clock with alarms to use as a medication prompt – minimising the need for other aids. It is versatile as it can be installed on a table top or wall.
DAY OF THE WEEK CALENDAR CLOCK
While the Digital Orientation Clock appears to be the most popular from our poll, there are many designs to consider – including analogue, desktop, talking, LED, smart and paper… and often a traditional analogue design is preferred by our older population!

So … if you are still wondering what the different features and considerations are when prescribing orientation aids, why not come visit us at the @Solutions Centre and we can walk you through the dozen different orientation clocks we have on display!!
ORIENTATION CLOCKS
PROVIDER SPOTLIGHT

This month we took the time to chat a bit more with Peter & Jack, Director and Assistant, of @Wild West Wheelchairs to ask a few questions and get to know them a little better…

How did you get where you are today? Peter: "I would say: challenging myself to always find the best solution to each person. I was already working in the industry when I realised I would like to help even more people without the restrictions of my old job description. Nowadays, you will find me always trying to take one step further to help each individual." "That is true..." says Jack "...when I first met Peter, I was looking into a new wheelchair and Peter kept providing option after option, making small adjustments until we could find the best fit for my needs. From that first experience with him, I just got more and more involved with Wild West Wheelchairs and just at the beginning of this year he welcomed me on board as one of the team."
What is your favourite thing about your career? Jack: "Getting up in the morning and being able to help my community." and Peter adds: "It sounds cliche, but it is true, each day is different because each individual has a specific need, so working with them and being able to support and see the outcome of our work is definitely rewarding." 

Aside from necessities, what's one thing could you not go a day without? "Music!" says Jack "Whenever I am not on the phone with Peter, I need to have music playing in the background. I am very eclectic, so it does not matter what is playing, but I need to be listening to some music" for Peter, Jack says "Lunch!" and they both have a laugh… inside joke maybe?! Jack explains "Peter needs his lunch, more than anyone in this world, if not, he starts losing his senses.. hahaha" and Peter agrees. 🤣
JACK & PETER
How do you plan to enjoy the upcoming sunny weekends? Peter "I love getting my family together for road trips, it is always part of our weekends, enjoying time together." while for Jack "I run the State Electric Wheelchair Hocky & Soccer Association, so most of my weekends you will find me playing and supporting the disability community"

What's your favourite brunch meal? Peter: "This one is easy… Dim Sum! more specific Emma's Restaurant in East Victoria Park, I highly recommend it! I love getting up on the weekend and going with Kylie and the kids to enjoy the best dumplings in town" while Jack takes us to another side of the globe with his response: "Mexican Poached Eggs with black beans and a bit of steamed rice.. and please do not hesitate to add chilli sauce! You must give it a go!" - Are you starving after this conversation too???🤤😋
ASK THE TEAM !

Do you have any questions or a problem you want our team of experts to help you solve? We're here to help you! Just reply or send us an email and our team of experienced therapists, suppliers & engineers will work together to find you a solution!

This month Marilyn had a question she couldn’t immediately answer - can a commode be used with a bidet?

We often encounter a situation where a person has had a bidet previously fitted however their condition changes whereby they now require the use of a commode. It is also worth considering when prescribing what type of commode if a person is likely to require a bidet in the future.
ETAC & JUVO COMMODES AND COWAY BIDET
There has been a lot of work done to design a commode with bidet compatibility on the east coast and after contacting @The Bidet Shop (Queensland), we realised it is not as simple as first thought!

• The Coway BA08 bidet can be utilised under the Etac Swift Mobil-2 commode chair.
• This is the only commode chair that the Bidet shop knows will go over their bidets, and seat modifications (to the commode seat) are required to ensure both are compatible. 
• An evaluation form also needs to be filled out for the bidet to ensure the existing toilet and the bidet are compatible.
• The Bidet shop sell the Etac swift tilt in space for $2750 and seat mod is $300, to suit the Coway BA08. A freight charge will require to be added.
• The commode seat is sent away to be modified - to a plastics company in Sydney – and can take up to 5 to 10 working days.
• The seat modification can be completed on the attendant propelled and tilt in space Etac commode.

Local Perth suppliers of the Etac commode include @Emprise Mobility@AC Mobility@HospEquip and @Daily Living Products.

@Unicare were also contacted to see if it is possible to modify the Juvo Commode and advised that this is a possibility however liaison with Annette Terranova would be required and specific details supplied to see if the commode seat can be adjusted accordingly.
Marilyn has an NDIS participant who has an existing bidet fitted to her toilet and is in the process of prescribing her a suitable commode. Marilyn will meet with Annette next month to explore the option with a Juvo commode as she believes that this type of commode will best meet this participant’s needs. If you’re interested in the outcome or have any more questions about this problem – why not email Marilyn.
OT WEEK 2021 - FUNDRAISER QUIZ NIGHT
📣 Join us as the sun sets on OT Week 2021 with our very first Fundraising Quiz Night!! 🎓🎉 

🏆 Who will be awarded the 2021 OT Week Quiz Night Trophy??

Don't miss this fantastic opportunity to network with other like minded people, organisations and community groups in the industry! Tickets and tables are limited with plenty of prizes and giveaways on the night! This event is fully accessible ♿️

OT Week 2021 is an opportunity to celebrate Occupational Therapy and promote the awesome work that occupational therapists do across Australia. This year's event will bring together allied health practitioners, students, suppliers & clients to decide who will be awarded the 2021 OT Week Quiz Night Trophy!

The @Solutions Centre, supported by @OT Services Group & @OT Australia are hosting this year's Quiz Night which will test your general and OT knowledge while promoting this year's theme of participation, inclusion and independence.
 
This event will raise funds for @Break the Boundary Inc., a WA based charity which operates solely on donations, grants & volunteers to provide opportunities to promote participation, inclusion and independence through nature based mountain biking around Australia.

📩 DM us if you’re interested in sponsoring or supporting this event further! 

CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS
AMBER JONES
 
Dry Erasable Planners are great for aiding in organizing your goals for the week and keeping track of them. Especially useful in people living with memory loss or attention deficits for prompting jobs that need to be done day by day.
  
DRY ERASABLE PLANNERS
QuickMove (provided by @Unicare Health) provides a more secure sit-to-stand procedure for both user and carer. When the user has risen using his/her own strength, the carer or the user folds down the cushions behind the buttocks, to provide stable support, the user then has the option to remain standing or to be seated during the transfer.
QUICK MOVE STANDING HOIST
OFFSET DOOR HING
Offset Door Hing can widen the useable space of a door walkway without having to completely resize the door by swinging away offset door hinges. The hinges allow the door to swing out clear of the door frame making the whole space within the frame passable for someone using a mobility aid or with a larger body type. 
Your Minder Talking Alarm Clock (provided by @Tab Timerallows you to set spoken alarms that can remind the user what the alarm is set for, all while being spoken by someone they are familiar with. Up to 6 alarms can be set to be used for prompts such as "it's time to take your morning medications" or "remember to feed your fish".  
YOUR MINDER TALKING ALARM CLOCK
LIVING WITH DEMENTIA AND DRIVING STUDY
FREE - 08/09, at 3:30 pm
EMPOWERING AMPUTEES
DONATE TODAY
OT WEEK 2021 -  QUIZ NIGHT
29/10, at 6:30 pm
OTALK: PARALYMPICS EXPERIENCE
FREE - 17/11, at 3:30 pm
Supported by:
OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY SERVICES GROUP - OTSG
WILD WEST WHEELCHAIRS
NATIONAL TRADE SUPPLIER - NTS
FREEDOM MOTORS AUSTRALIA
EMPRISE MOBILITY
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