Leading In Dementia Training

Published: 22/05/2019

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.

We uphold a very high standard of training here at Bluebird Care Maidstone 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 Mel 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!