A woman in her 70s approached the dementia worker following a talk at a local women’s group, sharing her concerns of having similar symptoms for the last few months. She was advised to contact her GP and advised to ask for a memory test if she felt that her memory loss was not a part of her normal ageing process. As well as contact details for the BME Dementia Service, she was also given a fact sheet on ‘How the GP could help’ in her mother tongue.
After a delay, her husband approached the worker and asked them to accompany them to a test appointment with the consultant. At the consultant appointment, the couple were very nervous. As English is their second language, the consultant was trying her best to find the relevant test. The consultant decided to do Punjabi memory test with the client because of her language barrier. However the client still struggled with some questions due to her literacy skills. The consultant concluded that there was a chance of her being diagnosed with dementia and referred her for a brain scan.
After her scan, a diagnosis of Alzheimers was made. The couple were devastated due to the stigma attached to the illness. They were both supported emotionally to deal with the diagnosis and information on Alzheimers was provided in their mother tongue. They were also referred to the ‘Hamari Yaadain’ café, but after their first visit, the person living with dementia decided not to attend. A sitting service was therefore put in place which worked out very well for the family. They have continued to engage with support ever since and are managing the diagnosis well.