A south coast care home provider has tripled its investment in highly specialist nurses to help support more people and families living with dementia.
Colten Care has welcomed two more Admiral Nurses to its team, including one at consultant level, under an expanding partnership with Dementia UK.
The move follows the success of a first Admiral Nurse, Kay Gibson, in developing a group-wide dementia care strategy.
Kay’s ongoing input will be strengthened by new appointees Adam Smith and Tracy Logan with the trio working together to support residents, families and communities at Colten’s 20 nursing homes, including its five dementia-specific settings.
Adam is one of only a handful of Consultant Admiral Nurses nationally and the first to be appointed by a private care home provider.
An Admiral Nurse for several years, he has moved to Colten from Dementia UK where he had consultant responsibility for the South of England and Wales.
He previously worked for the Royal British Legion, being operationally responsible for developing its Admiral Nurse teams in Hampshire and Somerset under an independent living support programme.
At Colten, Adam will lead the development and clinical supervision of the Admiral Nurse team. He will be based at St Catherines View in Winchester and also have direct responsibility for Newstone House in Sturminster Newton, Dorset.
Adam said: “Getting to know Colten Care over the years I have been amazed by the skills, talent and passion of the care and nursing staff at all levels. I’ve been inspired by what they are doing as an organisation and wanted to be part of it. Their enthusiasm is infectious.
“This further investment in Admiral Nurses really puts Colten Care at the forefront of dementia expertise in the care home sector. As a highly specialist team we will be able to drive forward strategy and keep pushing boundaries.”
Tracy joins Colten with extensive experience as a learning disability nurse, helping people with complex mental health needs.
Based at Linden House in Lymington, one of her first tasks will be helping the families of residents settling into a newly opened floor of 15 bedrooms.
Tracy said: “Colten Care has a great reputation for helping people to live well with dementia. Dementia care is becoming more person-centred and family-focused all the time and our new team will see us ideally positioned to reach out to the wider communities served by our homes as well as the residents actually living with us.”
Since Kay was appointed in 2016, Colten has evolved a dementia care strategy focused on clinical care, companionship and other parts of the care mix.
To support families, she has run regular community drop-in sessions, something the wider team will continue.
Kay will now be based at The Aldbury in Poole and also have responsibility for Fernhill in Longham.
Elaine Farrer, Colten Care’s Operations Director, said: “We are thrilled to welcome Tracy and Adam to our team, building on Kay’s great work. By investing in our Admiral Nurse provision we are delivering on our promise to help residents and relatives overcome the challenges associated with dementia. It is fantastic news for our continual journey of improvement for the benefit of residents, families and communities.”
Admiral Nurses are part of Colten Care’s wider commitment to dementia awareness which has seen more than 80% of its entire staff join the Dementia Friends programme.
Dementia UK provides specialist dementia support for families through Admiral Nurses. When things get challenging or difficult for people with dementia and their families, Admiral Nurses work alongside them, giving the one-to-one support, expert guidance and practical solutions they need.