Shared learning is a model with many benefits, one of which is the ability to gain knowledge through other’s experience within a group setting, sharing what works and what doesn’t. It is a beneficial method of enhancing knowledge and accelerating advances in a particular area. Memory care is one in which shared learning can quickly improve care, programs, systems and outcomes.
Recently I was honored to participate in the Memory Care Forum in Philadelphia, a shared learning opportunity where numerous experts in memory care shared their personal learnings, experiences and perspectives. I marveled at the level of commitment of my fellow experts, helping others to create exceptional memory care programs by sharing “hands-on” strategies and programs. Most speakers came with 20 or more years of experience, willing to “share their learning” and offer their expertise to “raise the bar” in memory care, an area of great need.
If your organization wants to develop or enhance a memory care program on your own, consider that it took these experts 20 years or more to gain this knowledge and expertise. My question then is, why not learn from others who have already done so, instead of struggling on your own? Forums and conferences offer us a chance to advance rapidly toward the goal of creating authentic memory care programs.
A secondary benefit of such learning environments is the opportunity to meet other like-minded people who become resources for information and support in the future. Many of the experts willingly offer advice, services and opportunities for further collaboration.
As described above, the Memory Care Forum is sponsored by the American Medical Director Association’s Society of Post-Acute and Long Term Care Medicine and the Institute of the Advancement of Senior Care, which is dedicated to promoting continuous innovation, best practice, research, resources and educational programs. The next Memory Care Forum is scheduled for September in San Diego. I would recommend that if you are in the area or can travel to the San Diego, do so to seize the opportunity to participate in a unique “shared learning” experience, have some fun, and garner some new friends.