Common Core Principles for Supporting People with Dementia

A guide to training the social care and health workforce

This guidance was commissioned by the Department of Health as part of the implementation of the National Dementia Strategy: Living Well with Dementia (Department of Health 2009).

This guide presents eight Common Core Principles for Supporting People with Dementia. They can be used to enable workforce development for any member of staff working in health or social care with people at any stage of dementia, from the earliest signs to the fully diagnosed condition. The common core principles are relevant to every setting and provide a basis for a general understanding of the condition. They aim to build workers' confidence in adapting their actions and communication in order to respond appropriately to the person with dementia. Signposting to resources and further reading has been included at the end of the guide.

Although the guide is written primarily for the health and social care sectors, the principles and supporting information will also be of interest to those working in any situation where people interact with those with dementia. The principles can be applied to any customer-focused provision, with equal relevance to those working in settings such as shops and banks, as well as public sector settings such as library, education and housing services.