Let's CHAT Dementia Webinars

In collaboration with Dementia Training Australia, the Let’s CHAT Dementia team has created a six-part series of webinars, which provides an overview of cognitive impairment and dementia care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. These webinars follow the story of Aunty Molly who presents with memory and thinking problems. As the series progresses, we accompany Aunty Molly, who is supported by her son Frank and health service professionals, through her dementia diagnosis and management of her changing needs over time.

This series is aimed at primary health care teams including General Practitioners, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health practitioners and health workers, nurses, allied health professionals and others who work in primary care and are wanting to learn more about best practice care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples at risk of or living with cognitive impairment or dementia.

Each webinar discusses a key aspect of primary care in relation to cognitive impairment and dementia in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Webinar 1 - Best Practice Cognitive Impairment and Dementia Care for Older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People Attending Primary Care

Dr Mary Belfrage and Professor Constance Dimity Pond provide an overview of best practice principles in the detection and management of cognitive impairment and dementia, focusing on the cultural context of addressing the needs of older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, their families, carers and communities. This webinar is aimed at general practitioners.

DTA Webinar 1

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About the presenters

Dr Mary Belfrage - Clinical Lead NACCHO-RACGP Partnership Project
Mary has been a GP in community health and Aboriginal health services in desert communities and for nearly ten years was the Medical Director at the Victorian Aboriginal Health Service. Mary is a consultant to the Let’s CHAT Dementia project and led the development of the ‘Best practice guide to cognitive impairment and dementia care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people attending primary care’ resource Mary is currently the Clinical Advisor in the NACCHO-RACGP partnership work within the RACGP.

Professor Dimity Pond - Professor of General Practice, University of Newcastle
Dimity is a GP in clinical practice in Berowra, NSW. She is Professor of General Practice at the University of Newcastle and conducts research in the area of mental health and dementia, focusing mainly on GP identification and management. She has had experience in educating GPs and other members of the primary care team, on issues around dementia diagnosis and management. These sessions have included some yarns with AMS staff. She has recently been the clinical lead for a Northern Sydney Primary Health Network project for GPs around quality improvement in dementia care.

Webinar 2 - Detection of cognitive impairment and dementia in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples attending primary care

Adjunct Professor Mark Wenitong and Adjunct Professor Edward Strivens discuss the clinical and cultural best practice principles of detection and diagnosis of cognitive impairment and dementia in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples attending primary care.

DTA Webinar 2

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About the presenters

Adjunct Professor Mark Wenitong - General Practitioner and Adjunct Professor Queensland University of Technology
Adjunct Professor Mark Wenitong is from the Kabi Kabi tribal group of South Queensland, and has been extensively involved in both clinical and policy work throughout his career as a GP. Mark is the past president and founder of the Australian Indigenous Doctors Association and sits on numerous councils and committees. Mark has also previously been; an Aboriginal Public Health Medical Officer at Apunipima Cape York Health Council working on health reform across the Cape York Aboriginal communities; a Senior Medical Officer at Wuchopperen Health Services in Cairns; a Medical Advisor for the Office for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health in Canberra; acting CEO of the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation; a member of the National Health Committee of the National Health and Medical Research Council, and has worked in community development with World Vision in Papunya, Northern Territory.

Adjunct Professor Edward Strivens - Clinical Director for Older Persons James Cook University & Cairns and Hinterland Hospital
Adjunct Professor Eddy Strivens is a practicing clinician and national leader in geriatric medicine and dementia, working in Far North Queensland for more than 20 years. He has worked extensively with local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and has validated the use of culturally appropriate cognitive assessment tools in these populations. He is practiced in linking research with clinical outcomes in these communities. He holds an academic position as Adjunct Professor at James Cook University. His research interests are in culturally appropriate assessment, healthy ageing, integrated care and models of service delivery.

Webinar 3 - Health care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples living with dementia attending primary care

Harry Douglas and Associate Professor Dina LoGiudice discuss high-quality care for older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who have been diagnosed with dementia and who attend primary care.

DTA Webinar 3

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About the presenters

Harry Douglas Indigenous Reference Group Co-ordinator and Aboriginal Research Officer, Victorian Aboriginal Health Service and Let’s CHAT Dementia Project
Harold is a proud Gunnai man from South Eastern Victoria. He is a Research Officer on the Let’s CHAT Dementia project, an IRG (Indigenous Reference Group) Co-ordinator and also an Integrated Team Care Co-ordinator at the Victorian Aboriginal Health Service. Harry has worked as an Aged Care Consultant and Personal Care Assistant for 20 years and managed an activity group at the ACES (Aboriginal Community Elders’ Service) for a number of years – he was even the cook and gardener there for a while!

Associate Professor Dina LoGiudice - Geriatrician and Lead Investigator, Royal Melbourne Hospital, Victorian Aboriginal Health Service and Let’s CHAT Dementia Project
Associate Professor Dina LoGiudice is a clinical researcher from the Department of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences at the University of Melbourne, and Geriatrician at Royal Melbourne Hospital and Victorian Aboriginal Health Service. Her research interests involve cognitive health and healthy ageing among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and those of diverse cultural backgrounds.

Webinar 4 - Health prevention and promotion for cognitive impairment and dementia in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples attending primary care

Join Lauren Poulos and Associate Professor Sarah Russell as they discuss risk factors for cognitive impairment and dementia, and explain ways to help health professionals to promote brain health and reduce the risk of dementia across the life course of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who attend primary care.

DTA Webinar 4

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About the presenters

Lauren Poulos - Project Coordinator, Neuroscience Research Australia
Lauren is a Biripi woman from New South Wales, with over 17 years’ experience in the Finance Services, and Not-for-Profit Industry. For the last 3 years, she has been a part of the Aboriginal Health and Ageing Program team at NeuRA as a Project Coordinator on the Caring for Spirit Project.

Dr Sarah Russell - Clinical Neuropsychologist and Principal Research Officer, Public/private practice and James Cook University
Sarah Russell is a Clinical Neuropsychologist working in public and private practice. Sarah also works as a Principal Research Officer with the Healthy Ageing Research Team at James Cook University in Cairns. Her focus is on healthy ageing, with a particular focus on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities in Far Northern Queensland.