Why should I use First Link?
By 2020, over 250,000 Ontarians will be living with some kind of dementia. This means that you will have more and more patients that are not only living with dementia, but with other comorbid conditions that make health self-management increasingly difficult.
Did you know that people with dementia are:
- Twice as likely to be hospitalized than people without the disease
- Twice as likely to visit emergency departments for potentially preventable conditions
Easy access to ongoing services and support can make a huge difference to the health care system.
- People referred to First Link by primary care providers received support on average 11 months sooner than those who self-referred.
- Early support and education reduce caregiver burden; caregivers who are connected, supported and informed are better prepared and possess enhanced coping skills.
- Through education and support, caregivers will have increased capacity to manage the psychological and behavioural symptoms that typically result in visits to the ER and crisis-related long-term care placements.
If you are a health care professional, First Link will:
- Help with screening and diagnosis
- Assist client and caregiver to better understand dementia
- Direct your patients to more focused support and care that improves quality of life for people with dementia and their families
- Allow you to devote more time to dementia’s medical issues
- Reduce the burden on your practice of treating someone with dementia
- Help your patients live more comfortably and longer in their homes
- Connect you with a network of formal care providers who can educate you about dementia
To make First Link a part of your practice, download the referral form and contact your local Alzheimer Society for more information.