Leading In Dementia Training

Published: 22/05/2019

We uphold a very high standard of training here at Bluebird Care Gravesham & Dartford and have recently been trialling the use of virtual reality to compliment our classroom learning on dementia.

We uphold a very high standard of training here at Bluebird Care Gravesham & Dartford and have recently been trialling the use of virtual reality to compliment our classroom learning on dementia.

Training Manager Nicola has arranged for us to use a virtual reality headset that links to a smartphone and gives a powerful recreation of what it is like for someone living with dementia.


Using 'A Walk Through Dementia', which is a groundbreaking app from Alzheimer's Research UK, the aim is to help our staff understand a little more about some of the challenges that dementia can bring and through that understanding, further improve the care our customers receive.

The app uses a combination of computer generated environments and 360 degree video sequences to illustrate in powerful detail how even the most everyday task of making a cup of tea can become a challenge for someone with dementia.

The app includes three scenarios that cover purchasing items from a supermarket for a cup of tea, challenges encountered when navigating a street and making a cup of tea for visiting family members.

This new headset was trialled with our office team, who commented on how helpful it was. The headset immerses the wearer into a world that is really quite different to our own.

Here is an example of one of the scenarios:

Hilary Evans, Chief Executive of Alzheimer’s Research UK, the UK’s leading dementia research charity, said:

Dementia is commonly misunderstood, so A Walk Through Dementia is designed to offer the public a clearer picture of the challenges that people living with the condition face in everyday life.

The app also gives a poignant insight into the emotional impact of symptoms, an element that people with dementia told us was important to achieve.

Care Manager Denise explained:

I knew that the reality those living with dementia experienced was different, but I do not think I quite realized how different it was. The headset gave a very immerse experience and I found it so helpful.

I was taken into a reality where I had to go shopping and simple everyday things like the shelves, finding the right change and even reading the shopping list presented quite a challenge.

This app is an excellent tool and will help make a big difference to our customers living with dementia simply through understanding more about the condition.

We provide homecare to many people living with dementia in Tonbridge & Tunbridge Wells and expect that to only increase, so this is an excellent and helpful innovation!