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Dementia State Plan 2020-2024: Building a Dementia-Capable Virginia

Virginia Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Commission, Government of Virginia Government of Virginia Country Resources Older Persons General Health Policies, Laws, Strategies & Plans, Service Standards Virginia 1 October 2019 Policy document dementia

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In this new Plan, the more recent concept of dementia-friendly is incorporated as a critical element of dementia capability. A dementia-friendly community is one that is both accessible to people living with dementia and their care partners and enables their continued engagement with the community (Alzheimer’s Association, 2016). Using the two concepts together ensures that the lived experience of people living with dementia, their caregivers, and families, is supported and enhanced. The Commission has also adopted more dementia-friendly terms throughout the Plan. Examples of this are replacing ‘person with dementia’ with ‘person living with dementia, recognizing that people do live with dementia and that the individual is more than the disease. Similarly, ‘care partner’ is being used interchangeably throughout the Plan together with the term ‘caregiver’ in recognition that the language used for people supporting individuals living with dementia is shifting.
The 2020-2024 Plan contains new recommendations to support dementia-friendly initiatives by working with the public health system and others to promote greater awareness and understanding of dementia, and to reduce the stigma surrounding dementia. The Commission expects that success in these areas will help individuals, families, and communities affected by Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia enjoy an improved quality of life.

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