Enabling John to live his best possible life
John* came to Hengoed in December 2019 on the residential care pathway. He is a 67-year-old gentleman with a long history of Alcohol and Drug Abuse, having been diagnosed with Korsakoff Dementia and a Borderline Personality Disorder in recent years. John is subject to The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards.
Before coming to Hengoed he had a complex history of disengaging with people and professionals due to trust issues and past traumas. This led to homelessness, placement breakdowns and decline in his mental health and general wellbeing.
When John arrived at Hengoed he was withdrawn, reluctant to engage with staff or fellow residents. His reclusive tendencies meant he would spend nearly all his time in his bedroom, in darkness, isolated. He often struggled with processing things and, as a result, had been known to get aggressive or agitated towards staff. He can be resistant to his personal care needs and has limited insight into other aspects of his care and support needs.
How Hengoed support John
Since John’s arrival at Hengoed Park the staff team have worked in collaboration with professionals and most importantly John himself to develop a person-centred care plan that incorporates his needs, wants and aspirations.
Taking his memory and brain related cognition into account, staff are mindful to use simple commands and language to reduce his anxieties. This has been beneficial to John’s processing abilities and self-autonomy. We implemented routine to provide structure and for him to maintain a level of independence to carry out daily living skills.
After months of perseverance and consistent encouragement John began making small but positive steps. Steps of which we are so proud.
Initially he became open to the idea of meaningful activity and latterly the participation of such. Dedicated 1:1 support was put in place which has proven to be beneficial for trust building and forming positive relationships with staff.
He requested weekly trips out, which continue to date. These trips are planned to add value to him and offer a stimulus – he has a real passion for history and places of architectural interest. He likes to have time to plan and options to think about well in advance. During his trips he engages well with staff and members of the community. He enjoys spending time soaking up the scenery and piecing things together. Upon his return he will engage with the wider staff team and tell them about his trips with enthusiasm.
Over the past few months John has shown autonomy by going out shopping to purchase new clothing and other items of choice as well as having visited a chiropodist a handful of times.
Although he still enjoys his own company, John has been witnessed sitting in the communal areas more often and engaging with peers.
There has been marked improvement in his mental health, confidence, and overall quality of life. We continue to encourage John, provide consistency in his life and take things at a pace that he is comfortable with. Feedback from John is testament to the positive outcomes he and our staff have achieved.
Going out once a week has made me realise there is more to life than lying in bed. It’s nice to smile and laugh. I’m happy at Hengoed, the place has helped me tremendously, but my end goal would be to leave.
*Name has been changed in line with confidentiality.