Dementia Specialists Provide Vital Training to Search and Rescue Teams

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Dementia specialists from the University of Worcester’s Association for Dementia Studies have been providing valuable training to members of West Midlands Search and Rescue.

The training gives team members vital knowledge about how people with dementia might think and behave; in order to help them when searching for a missing person.

Two members of staff from the University of Worcester’s Association for Dementia Studies have provided their time voluntarily to educate around 45 members of the search and rescue team.

Sue Pinfold-Brown said: “It is really crucial that anyone involved in searching for or communicating with a person living with dementia is aware of the many ways in which that person might behave, or how they might feel, and indeed, their life history and places they may have visited.

“It’s important to realise that someone with dementia may be very confused and frightened.”

The training has given search and rescue volunteers a greater understanding of the different types of dementia and a better understanding of how to communicate more effectively with that person effectively.

Andy MacAuley, WMSAR Search Lead, said: “Lowland Rescue teams are on-call 24/7 to help the emergency services find missing vulnerable people, and dementia is one of the highest-risk factors leading to our deployment. Our voluntary specialists benefit enormously from the donation of expertise by University of Worcester, which will help us serve those most in need and bring them home to their families.”