The Improving demeNtia care Through Self-Experience (INTenSE) is an ERASMUS+ project that aims to educate, equip and train health and social care professionals to better support and care for people living with dementia through open access innovative learning approaches and the use of ICT tools that explore the lived experience of the person with dementia.
All professionals involved in dementia care should gain a strong understanding of the impact of this disease to anticipate the care that is required. Self-experience is scientifically proven to be the best way to create empathy and real understanding as a means to change practice, reduce issues and improve the quality of care. Self-experience can be achieved through a number of good practices, such as Virtual Tour, Role Playing games and Theater Laboratories.
These have not been examined in an integrated manner with regard to improving dementia care, yet they would allow professionals to walk in the shoes of a person with dementia.
INTenSE will provide a way for professionals to have a glimpse into the world of dementia, by developing an open-access “dementia simulation toolkit” that will support the introduction of innovative methodologies for the reinforcement of key competences development, including critical thinking and cooperation in science and technology.
INTenSE will make integrated self-experience practices widely available via a training program for the current and next generations of dementia professionals. All project activities have been designed to successfully achieve the project objectives, which include:
- A detailed scoping review of the state-of-the-art and focus groups to identify best practices, and the collection of transnational experience to inform the INTenSE e-booklet.
- The co-design and development, at European level, of the INTenSE Dementia Simulation toolkit (DST), to simulate dementia symptoms and create empathy and real understanding as a means to change dementia care practice and to improve quality of care.
- The co-design of an ICT web platform as a tool for creating mutual learning through the exchange of experiences, fostering digital competences of professionals.
In addition, two INTenSE trainings will be organized where professionals will learn about self-experience practices through participatory design, and learn about the facilitation and use of the toolkit and platform.
INTenSE will offer a set of innovative methodologies to support and reinforce the development of key competences for all professionals’ working in the field of dementia to meet the related challenges. These include theoretical research (relating to training in literacy and best practices based on partners’ experience),digital innovation (use of ICT tools to efficiently support professionals in their daily work and use of an ICT web platform for creating mutual learning through the exchange of experiences and evidences) and practical experience strategies (immersive relational experience by means of Virtual Dementia Tours, role plays and theatre laboratories, for a deep understanding of the disease).