Associate Health Minister Nicky Wagner is welcoming a move to promote examples of good practice in dementia design.

The best examples of secure dementia unit design have been published on the Ministry of Health website.

“I’d like to congratulate the first two featured facilities — Millvale Lodge on the Kapiti Coast and Westella Homestead in Feilding — for not only providing a quality environment for their patients but also showing other residential aged care providers what’s possible,” Ms Wagner says.

“The environment in which people with dementia live is incredibly important — it can be a positive therapeutic intervention on its own.”

Last year, the Ministry of Health released a dementia design resource to support the development or major reconfiguration of secure dementia care units.  The resource aims to enhance dementia patients’ quality of life through a number of design principles around lighting, colour and contrast, memory aids, gardens and the size and density of facilities.

“As we all know, New Zealand’s population is ageing, and sadly, that means rising levels of dementia.  I hope other facilities follow the lead of Millvale and Westella to ensure dementia patients receive the best possible care,” Ms Wagner says.

The design examples are available at:

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