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Feedback from carers about how we're doing during the pandemic

For those of you that care for a loved one with dementia you may have noticed that every few months we ask you to complete a survey to help YPWD to understand how we are doing, and how we are helping.

In these very challenging and unprecedented times this feedback is paramount in assisting us to understand how the services we offer benefit those using them and where we need to make improvements.

The most recent survey looked back across October to December 2020 and we’d like to share a few of the findings with you, and to thank you for completing this survey and helping us to keep doing the best we can for you and your loved one.

We asked you to rate the quality of our services

In total 74% of carers rated our services as ‘Excellent’ with 16% rating them as ‘Good’. This is particularly humbling, and it means that our fantastic team are maintaining high standards.

We wanted you to tell us how you would rate the impact of our services in reducing the feeling of isolation for your loved one with dementia, and we asked whether this was low, medium, high or no impact.

40% of those that responded told us that the impact was high, with 48.6% rating the impact as medium.

Similar to the question above we asked carers to rate the impact of our services in reducing the feeling of isolation for themselves.

28.6% of those that responded said that the impact was high with a further 57.2% of carers saying the impact was medium.

We wanted to know whether the mood of the person with dementia benefitted from taking part in our services over the three months i.e. did they seem less sad, less anxious

60% of those that responded said 'yes' to this question

We then went on to ask whether the mood of the carer themselves benefitted from taking part in our services

63% of carers said 'yes' to this question

Carers graded the following services as ‘very helpful’

Live video workshops – while we cannot meet face to face we have developed a growing range of live, online workshops throughout the working week

Calls to carers – we call those that are caring for a loved one with young onset dementia to have a general catch up and to see how things are during these challenging times

Walking sessions (out of lockdown and within government rules) – when able we have introduced these face to face walking sessions at local beauty spots for the person with young onset dementia and one of our specialist team.

Activity boxes – these have provided a range of games, craft, art, cooking and treats for many of our people living with young onset dementia and their carer.

Those that responded to the survey were also asked to leave a comment about the services if they wanted to, here is a small example of what was said.

"The services YPWD have provided over the last three months have kept both of us sane, their workshops have been creative, interactive and help to make us feel much less isolated and know there are people out there that do care."

"Being the Carer, for my loved one, YPWD have taken the time to contact me, and listen to any concerns I have had and given me sound advice which has been very reassuring. I am also kept in the loop receiving regular monthly newsletters and what future meetings are coming up across Zoom."

"Great in that it has helped my wife link to others where with lock down we could have been more isolated. I have also had input which help me to handle her symptoms."

"The Zoom workshops have given focus, interest, and laughter to my husband. He's also enjoyed the 1:1 activity with someone from YPWD I've felt the benefit of having an hour to myself knowing he is doing something constructive and having others to relate to."

"Maintaining the element of face-to-face conversations over video call with both YPWD team and other carers has been a tonic in an otherwise difficult period."

We asked carers to share with us what they’d like to see continue after the pandemic, the list is below, and we will of course do our utmost to consider continuing these parts of the service, resource permitting, that have been so very well received during the pandemic and three lockdowns.

- Calls to carers
- Carer group get togethers with professional speakers on live video (avoiding travel)
- Facebook group for carers
- Micro-group live video calls

Our next survey will be sent out to carers in March 2021.  Please do complete it, as we’d like to hear from as many of you as possible.


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