‘Design school’ expands knowledge on designing for dementia

What is thought to be the world’s first ‘design school’ specialising in environ- ments for people with dementia, and featuring experts in dementia design, took place in Birmingham’s Crowne Plaza Hotel on 13 March. Hosted by the Dementia Centre,

HammondCare, the event saw people with dementia and a supporter work together with design experts, to learn the skills needed to become more involved in the process of designing dementia- inclusive environments. The event is the first in a series of design

schools, which it is hoped will result in a “rich bank of knowledge about dementia- inclusive design” that can be used by architects, planners, developers and service providers to create better buildings and spaces for people living with dementia. Dementia-friendly design can

significantly improve the quality of life for people living with the condition, improv- ing decision making, reducing accidents,

lessening anxiety and helping them live more independent lives. The design school was co-hosted by

associate professor Colm Cunningham, director of the Dementia Centre, and Agnes Houston MBE, who has been living with dementia since 2006 and has campaigned for the cause. Director of the Dementia Centre,

HammondCare, associate professor Colm Cunningham commented: “I felt there was a real need to increase the involvement of people with dementia in design. People living with dementia have in many cases learned to live with environ- mental barriers and have developed personal solutions to these challenges that people who do not have dementia could learn from.” He continued: “Our design school

will give people living with dementia the unique opportunity to work together with design experts and contribute their ideas and knowledge to the creation

Our design school will give people living with dementia the unique opportunity to work together with design experts and contribute their ideas and knowledge to the creation of dementia-

friendly environments Colm Cunningham

of dementia-friendly environments. This school places the person living with dementia at the centre of design, whether that be a home, a hospital, a shopping centre, a public space or a product.”

IBI Group reappointed to NHS Healthy New Towns HEALTHY NEW TOWNS

IBI Group has announced its continued involvement in the Healthy New Towns programme working with the King’s Fund, who have been appointed by NHS England to help produce an official NHS guidance publication, which will be released in spring 2019. IBI will be contributing to the Estates

and Digital workstreams aspect of the Healthy New Towns guidance document and will be supporting The King’s Fund (an independent charity “working to improve health and healthcare in England”), and the Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA). The NHS England Healthy New

Towns scheme was set up to “rethink how

we live, and how healthcare services can be delivered”, and looks at ways to improve health through the built environ- ment. The new publication will provide evidence-based guidance on how to create healthy neighbourhoods, towns and cities, particularly in places of population growth and new development. IBI director Mario Bozzo, added:

“At IBI, we are bridging the gap between design and technology, especially in healthcare. This is a great opportunity to work alongside the NHS, as it continues to explore how digital solutions can support a more effective delivery of healthcare.” In other healthcare news for IBI, the

practice has appointed Maarit Heinonen- Smith from PRP Architects, as the firm’s UK retirement living and senior care lead. Heinonen-Smith has built what IBI said

is an “impressive portfolio designing and delivering innovative housing and care solutions for people over 55, having worked as the lead architect on many of their flagship projects”. Heinonen-Smith expressed her happi-

ness about joining the firm, commenting: “I am passionate about designing and delivering inspiring residential architec- ture which allows for flexibility, individ- uality and changing needs, as well as promoting the health and wellbeing of the residents.”



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