Research and Education

Due to lack of research and information on dementia in Ghana, Alzheimer`s Ghana team has been working to bring together students and researches in the area of Mental Health to undertake basic research on dementia.

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A meeting with research a student from College of Nursing, Sweden on 10th April 2015

Alzheimer`s Ghana had a series of meetings during this period ranging from Board Meetings on 4th and 11th May, Lunch and Dinner with the Board and other professionals in the field and also working hard to plan our forthcoming Anniversary Conference and Alzheimer`s Day in September 2015.

Updates of the World Alzheimer`s Month Activities

Updates of the World Alzheimer`s Month Activities

Here is a short report on the activities during the just ended World Alzheimer`s Month.On the Tuesday the 2nd of September Alzheimer`s Ghana launched the Months celebration at the Nabita Nursing Training College in Tema.

  • Thursday the 4th of September, our team was hosted on Dementia Awareness and Education programme on Hot FM/Radio Station at Accra. The programme lasted for about 20mins and attracted over 15million listeners both in the cities and villages.
  • Wednesday the 10th of September, our team also organised Dementia Awareness and Education programme at Citi FM/Radio Station at Accra the and this programme attracted over 20million audience.
  • Sunday the 14th of September, our team undertook Dementia Awareness and Education programme and Research Questionnaires at Royal House Chapel at Afienya town in the Ningo Prampram District Assembly. About 100 congregations was educated.
  • Tuesday the 16th of September, our team again undertook Dementia Awareness and Education programme and Research Questionnaires at Royal House Chapel at Afienya town in the Ningo Prampram District Assembly.
  • Wednesday 17th of September, our team conducted Dementia Awareness and Research Questionnaires at the Morbole Local Community in the Ningo Prampram District of Ghana.
  • Friday the 19th of September, our team were at Ashaiman Senior High School for education on Dementia Awareness and Research Questionnaires. Over 200 students between the ages of 16-25yrs at Ashaiman in the Tema Metropolital Assembly participated in the activity.
  • Sunday the 21st of September, our team visited Afienya Roman Catholic Church and did a presentation on Dementia and World Alzheimer`s Day. Over 250 people participated.
  • Monday the 15th of September, our team did a presentation on Dementia and reducing its Risks at the Rotary Club, Accra. Over 50 people were present.
  • Thursday the 25th of September, our team visited the Minister for Health and Nungua Traditional Council to invite the Minister, the chiefs and elders to the conference.
  • Tuesday the 30th September between 6am – 7am, our team was hosted by Ghana Television Corporation (GTV) on Breakfast show. We used this occasion to educate the public of over 25million on the topic Dementia: Can we reduce the risk?

 

 

Tuesday 30th September between 10:30am – 1:30pm

Alzheimer`s Ghana climaxed the month`s programmes with a Conference involving Government officials, WHO representative, Traditional Leaders, Security personnel from Ghana Armed Forces, Health Professionals from Ministry of Health and Ghana Health Services, Nursing/Medical Students, other NGOs, representatives from various media groups and other stakeholders. Below is the programme line-up.

Theme- Dementia: Can we reduce the risk?

Conference: Tuesday, 30th September 2014   10.30am – 1.30pm
Venue: Christ The King Catholic Church Conference Hall

Aims

  • to highlight the plight of people with dementia and their families in Ghana’s ageing population
  • to look at how to reduce the risk of dementia in Ghana by involving stakeholders and the general public
  • to launch an appeal for support for the organisation and people affected

Chairman: Professor Joseph Bediako Asare, (Chairman, Mental Health Board)

King Odaifio Welentsi III, Chief of Nungua Traditional Area.


Conference Pictures

World Alzheimer’s Day

World Alzheimer’s Day

September 21st of each year, is a year, is a day on which Alzheimer ‘s  organizations around the world concentrate their efforts on raising awareness about Alzheimer’s and dementia.

How Can World Alzheimer’s Day Help

Awareness about this degenerative and irreversible disorder is very important to understand and care for the patients affected with Alzheimer’s. The world Alzheimer’s Day focuses on getting more people know about the disease and why and how the patients could be managed though the disease itself cannot be cured.

The first people who should be educated on the symptoms and management of the disease are those who have someone suffering from it. In most of the cases the early Alzheimer’s symptoms are mistaken for age related forgetfulness and the disease is diagnosed only after it advances to a higher stage making it equally difficult for the patients and for the caregivers.

Being patient and knowing the symptoms and the extent to which the disease can progress will help in taking care of the patient and bearing with the pain of seeing their loved ones deteriorate into living log. The international Alzheimer’s  day tells the people that, they are not alone in their misery and someone next to them are facing the same or similar trauma; the talk show and the articles on the disease helps in educating the world to know more about the disease. The day also promotes the donation into the fund for Alzheimer’s research which may someday provide a breakthrough for the treatment and new findings in to key to unlock the disease.

Alzheimer`s Ghana joined Mrs Adih, President of the Board in Celebrating her Mum`s 80th Birthday

Alzheimer`s Ghana joined Mrs Adih, President of the Board in Celebrating her Mum`s 80th Birthday

Alzheimer`s Ghana joined Mrs Adih, President of the Board in Celebrating her Mum`s 80th Birthday on 17th May.

We used this occasion to interact with Nana Oye Lithur, Ministers for Gender Children and Social Protection and Mrs Qweenstar Pokuah Sawyerr, Deputy Minister for Central Region, who were present and also engaged some prominent men who were also present to support and donate towards Alzheimer`s Ghana activities.

TRAINING OF TRAINERS PROGRAMME

TRAINING OF TRAINERS PROGRAMME

Alzheimer`s Ghana in collaboration with Vision Allied Health Institute in Maryland, USA organised a (2) day training programme for Doctors, Physician Assistants, Nurses, Health Workers and Workers NGOs in the Health Sector on 13th-14th May 2014. The programme was a success. In pictures; (Demonstration of resuscitating a chocking dementia patient.)

AWARENESS CAMPAIGNS

AWARENESS CAMPAIGNS

In line with our strategic action plan of creating Awareness and Advocacy, Alzheimer`s Ghana participated in a collaborative programme with the Ministry of Children Gender and Social Protection to sensitize people from age 55 and above on dementia. This followed an invitation from the Minister whose Ministry is also undertaking free biometric registration (NHIS card for old people aged 55 and above). Alzheimer`s Ghana awareness creation team delivered talks to the recipients on Dementia, causes, Signs and Symptoms, available Therapies and Care for people with Dementia. The team participated in the joint programme at Ashaiman on Saturday the 24th of May, Nungua on Saturday, 7th of June and Korle-Bu on Saturday the 14th of June 2014. Each programme covered about 500 old people from the various communities. Response had been positive as questions were asked about the disease and its implication on families. The volume of calls received daily on our 24hour helpline has so far increased putting pressure on our committed team of volunteers. The Minister was very excited but pointed out that the Government has a serious economic problem at the moment. She has however pledged her future financial support for Alzheimer`s Ghana.

 

Our next trip will be on Saturday 21st of June at Agona East in the Central Region where we have been invited by the Regional Minister to undertake the same educational programme on Dementia to about 500 elderly people. Here are some of the pictures.

AWARENESS TRIP TO ASHAIMAN IN THE GREATER ACCRA REGION ONTHE 24th MAY 2014

 

AWARENESS TRIP TO NUNGUA IN ACCRA IN THE GREATER ACCRA REGION ON THE 24th MAY 2014

TRIP TO KORLE-BU IN ACCRA ON THE 14TH JUNE 2014

 

Dementia Lecture At Narh-Bita Hospital

Dementia Lecture At Narh-Bita Hospital

In pursuit of our strategic goal of education on Dementia, Alzheimer`s Ghana organized a lecture on dementia on the 10th of June 2014 at Narh-Bita Hospital, Tema for Doctors, Nurses, Nursing Students and some elderly people. Dr K. Menyah, a Ghanaian born Geriatrician resident in the Illinois, USA who is also now a volunteer of Alzheimer`s Ghana was the resource person for the programme. Ghana Radio FM called Obonu and a Television Station called TV3 were present to cover the lecture followed by an interview with Alzheimer`s Ghana.

MEDIA & AWARENESS (TELEVISION AND RADIO PROGRAMME)

MEDIA & AWARENESS (TELEVISION AND RADIO PROGRAMME)

TV3

In pursuit of our broad strategy on Dementia Awareness Creation, strong relationship with the media, Venance and Esther were invited for a short interview on TV3 Television Programme on 5th of June 2014 which was a live broadcast.

Discussion was centred on dementia, its causes, signs and symptoms, its prevalence in Ghana. It also touched the effect of the disease on families, the infrastructure capacity of the country to deal with the problems and Government`s readiness to collaborate to manage the situation in Ghana. The programme was a success as it gave Alzheimer`s Ghana a very wide coverage to dementia awareness message to every corner of the country.

 

Obonu FM

Also in participated in a radio interview and call in programme on Ghanaian radio station called Obonu FM in Tema on 7th May 2014. The awareness programme was centred on the bad treatment (abuse) to victims of Dementia and Alzheimer`s Disease and our work as an NGO in creating awareness sensitizing the public on the need to recognize dementia a disease condition that needs good care and management.

 

 

Workshop Programme: Scaling-up Ageing and Health Interventions in Ghana.

Alzheimer’s & Related Disorders Association of Ghana was invited by WHO to participate in a three day workshop with the topic “Scaling-up Ageing and Health Interventions in Ghana. The workshop which took place in Accra from 13th to 15th August 2013 included senior policy-makers and programme managers from Ghana Health Services and Ministry of Health from the different districts, other partners from UN and bilateral agencies, NGOs, and researchers from academic institutions. This initiative is part of Global Knowledge Translation for Ageing and Health project developed in partnership, and with financial assistance from Age UK. The objectives were to

  • Review the outcomes and recommendations of the country assessment report  and agree on the priority actions to be scaled up,
  • Prepare draft “country scale-up plans” on the priority actions,
  • Learn the fundamentals of evidence based policy development using Knowledge Translation and EVIPNet methodologies as tools and resources available to guide policy-makers  and stakeholders to make evidence-informed decisions for policy and programme implementation,
  • Learn the fundamentals of ageing and health programming,
  • Identify what each sector could contribute to the defined priority actions, and
  • Establish what each sector should contribute to the current implementation plan of the Ghana Ageing Policy.

Present at the meeting was the Deputy Director General of Ghana Health Service, Dr John Beard WHO President Geneva, Dr Mary Brantuo WHO, Ghana, Dr. Peju Olukoya, Consultant to WHO, Dr. Islene Araujo de Carvalho, WHO Geneva, Prof. Britwum, Ms Jan Killeen, Consultant to Alzheimer’s Disease International to mention but a few.

During the workshop participants were tasked to further describe the main ageing and health problems being faced in Ghana and develop Five Country Scale-up Plan. Each Country Scale up Plan addressed in detail one specific problem, and presented evidence based implementation strategies to tackle these problems. This process was facilitated by an extensive review of Ghana Ageing and Health Policies, Plans and programmes.

Ghana SAGE Report was also used as the main source of data, complemented by document review, sites visits and key informants interviews. In addition to the information in the Ghana Country Assessment report and SAGE report undertaken in 2010, the National Ageing and Health Task Force supported by WHO, tried to identify, in advance, existing evidence and information in relevant sectors related to the problem in the country or on the options proposed to address those problem that were identified. In the workshop, we developed a minimum of five Country Scale up Implementation Plans which served as a basis for implementation. The EVIPNet methodologies was used in the workshop and focused on the context of Ghana. The participants worked on developing a draft of a country scale up plan for each identified problem.

Further, Dr. John Beard President of WHO Geneva, Mrs Jan Killeen a consultant from Alzheimer’s Disease International in conjunction with Alzheimer’s & Related Disorders Association of Ghana and a representative from Help Age Ghana facilitated an opened discussion of additional problems identified by participants, related to policies for ageing interventions in the health system

Interactive plenary sessions were followed by work in small groups of 5, (ideally 5 to 6 people in each group). This allowed workshop participants to grapple with the questions in light of the issues on which they (departments, directorates, or institutions) worked on or addressed. During the discussions the salient problems such as affecting the ageing were identified to be:

  • Diagnosed and untreated hypertension,
  • High prevalence of chronic eye and respiratory problems
  • Limitation of function affecting social participation and quality of life
  • Poor utilization of healthcare services by older people, and
  • Inadequate preparedness of the health workforce to care for older people

Clarification of the problems were then made to successfully develop policy and action plans in the area of how the problem came to attention, the size of the problem, the cause of the problem, and how it was framed or described. In relation to this, policy options were suggested and implementation strategies were developed and were incorporated in the scale up plan for action. Following the presentation of the findings for implementation, a final session was held which then focused on steps to be taken to finalize the country scale up plans leaving how to finance the plan to be discussed in a donor’s round table.

2nd Africa Regional Conference of Alzheimer’s Disease International

2nd Africa Regional Conference of Alzheimer’s Disease International

On behalf of ARDAG Susanne Spittel attended the 2nd Africa Regional Conference of Alzheimer’s Disease International,  Indaba Hotel, Johannesburg, South Africa, 9 – 11 May 2013.

About the Conference

The Africa Alzheimer’s Congress has been created to provide education, information, conversation, and inspiration about Alzheimer’s and other memory related diseases.

Learn about everything related to the disease and the social factors that influence the health and wellbeing of communities.

Leave with important connections and an enlightened approach and the knowledge to enrich the community that you work in.

Objectives of the Conference

The Africa Alzheimer’s Congress, a first of its kind in South Africa, will focus not only on the Pharmaceutical and Medical needs of Alzheimer’s patients, but also on those of the Caretakers.

The conference, which targets doctors, specialists and care givers will feature a wide range of topics as can be seen in the Scientific Schedule.

This unique opportunity will bring together leading experts to explore international research on diagnosis methodology, as well as current and future treatment options for Alzheimer’s.

It will be an event to share knowledge and experience, develop collaborative thinking and inspire the next generation of our best and brightest young people to take up a career in this field.