In Italy, services for people with dementia are still still being developed. Our country has also developed a National Dementia Plan, but, apart from a few regions and centers of excellence, there is still much to be done to provide appropriate support to people with dementia in all stages of the disease. People with advanced dementia struggle to access palliative care, and often do not receive adequate care that ensures comfort and emotional, relational and spiritual support. People with advanced dementia are still more frequently subjected to invasive treatments at the end of life and pain is underestimated and as a result treatment is often omitted or ineffective.
For these reasons our working group is committed to making the Namaste Care program known and disseminated in all the care services in which fragile people access, to enrich their quality of life, through a loving approach, sensory stimulation, shared activity and greater social interaction.
FocosArgento, started working with the international Namaste Care network in January 2020 to implement the program in Italy - we thank Joyce for the valuable advice for the construction of the pilot project. Unfortunately, the pandemic has put this project on hold for a long time due to the inability to access care settings.
Fortunately, now that most of the care staff and the elderly are vaccinated, the project can restart!
We will start with a pilot project with a care home near us (Padua, northern Italy), and then spread the program to the rest of the country.
We have created a Facebook page @ namastecare.italia, through which we will disseminate news, knowledge and best practices: we want to build a community of people who can spread Namaste Care in their care service.
We are confident that Namaste Care will have great resonance in our country and will make a great contribution to spreading a holistic and palliative care approach to the care of people with advanced and end-of-life dementia.
Marta Zerbinati, Learning and Development Lead of FocosArgento