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SPOTLIGHT: Learning the best practices to provide the best care
Training in Gentle Persuasive Approaches (GPA)
Gentle Persuasive Approaches (GPA) is an evidence-based, innovative, person-centred care approach that re-frames challenging behaviours as self-protective or responsive behaviour occurring as a result of unmet needs.
Training is designed for interdisciplinary care staff from all health care sectors. GPA training encourages the understanding that a person with dementia is a unique human being, capable of interacting with the world. Assessment of the meaning behind behaviour and working alongside the person with dementia are part of GPA.
Participants are guided to fully understand responsive behaviours in order to be able to respond effectively and appropriately in a workplace setting. Training also includes respectful self-protective and gentle redirection technique for use in situations of risk.
Participants learn about the relationship between the disease process and behavioural responses and how to apply emotional, environmental and interpersonal communication strategies that are immediately useful.
Chelsea Daze & Amber Lapierre: Our Behavioural Support Champions
Personal support workers Chelsea Daze and Amber Lapierre have completed training provided by Behavioural Support Ontario (BSO), and now coach and mentor other staff members in behavioural support approaches as our in-house BSO Champions.
What is Behavioural Support Ontario?
Behavioural Support Ontario (BSO) is an initiative aimed at enhancing health care services for older adults at risk for or presenting with responsive behaviours. ARH received funding from the Champlain LHIN for behavioural support training through the BSO initiative. Personal Support Worker Chelsea Daze attended a two-day BSO training course, and now coaches and mentors other staff members in behavioural support approaches.
What are “responsive behaviours”?
“Responsive behaviours” are a result of changes in the brain resulting in cognitive impairment. These actions, words and gestures of persons with dementia, Parkinson’s disease and/or other major neurocognitive disorders are a response to something important in their personal, social or physical environment. Using this term encourages health care providers to focus on what can be done to make change rather than the behaviour’s impact. BSO recognizes that all behaviour has meaning, and that responsive behaviours are often communication of an unmet need.
Fundamental to BSO is that behaviour is communication. Behaviours are an attempt to express distress, solve problems or communicate unmet needs. They can be minimized through interventions based on understanding the person and adapting the environment or care to satisfy the individual’s needs.
BSO also focuses on collaborative care, where accessible, comprehensive assessment and interventions include shared interdisciplinary plans of care that rely on input and direction from the client and family members, as well as creating and maintaining a culture of safety where older adults and families live and visit and where staff work.