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Dementia Dialogues in West Jefferson April 16

2017 SC Outstanding Educator of the Year, Dr. Macie P. Smith, to lead training course

By Sherrie Norris

It is estimated that 16 million Americans will have Alzheimer’s by 2050, and that every 67 seconds someone develops Alzheimer’s disease in the United States. Also, that one in nine individuals 65 and above already have Alzheimer’s.

On Monday, April 16,  The Ashe Services for Aging in West Jefferson is pleased to present Dementia Dialogues, a training course leading to a better understanding of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.

This event is made possible by Ashe Services for Aging, Inc. High Country Area Agency on Aging/High Country Council of Governments and The University of South Carolina, and is scheduled for 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. in the Blue Ridge Electric Conference Room in West Jefferson.

It is designed for anyone with an interest in dementia, but specifically for families/caregivers and medical professionals, including nurses, social workers and activity directors, certified nursing assistants, public health officials, counselors and clergy.

Attending the training will help those who work with individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, or other dementia-related illness, attain a better understanding of the condition; it will help them increase knowledge, awareness and understanding of an often misunderstood and frustrating illness.
It will also help potential caregivers, families and medical personnel alike become better prepared to deal with those with the dementia-related diagnosis in whatever role they serve. Attendees will be able to better identify signs and symptoms of the disease and learn a more effective way to communicate with their loved ones and patients.

About the keynote speaker

Keynote speaker for the event is Dr. Macie P. Smith who was recently named 2017 Outstanding Educator of the Year by the South Carolina Area Health Education Consortium.

Smith is a licensed social worker and certified social work case manager with nearly two decades of experience working with aging and vulnerable populations in South Carolina as a social worker in gerontology. She currently serves as an adjunct faculty member at the University of South Carolina and the University of Phoenix, and as a subject matter expert in the College of Social Sciences. She also serves as lead program consultant with the Columbia Urban League.

Smith is also a published author and has appeared in several editions of Faculty Matters Magazine for her continued contributions in the academic areas of teaching, discovery, integration and application. She also conducts research, develops programs, conducts program evaluations and facilitates professional development training in the areas of health care management, human services program development.

Smith has also developed education programs for state and federal entities, nonprofit organizations, colleges and universities. She maintains a focus on coordinating quality care within aging and underserved communities through education, training and professional geriatric care management.

Smith is also the CEO of Diversified Training Consultants Group, a Geriatric Care Management business that promotes quality education and training for health and human services practitioners and family caregivers.

Five important module topics to be covered

Five module topics of this training session, within three separate workshops, will cover some very important aspects of Alzheimer’s, and will include the following: The Basic Facts (An Introduction to Dementia); Keeping the Dialogue Going (Communication Skills), Preparing the Environment (Safety, Activities of Daily Living and Quality of Life); It’s Nothing Personal (Addressing Challenging Behavior); and Now What Do I Do? (Creative Problem Solving).

This training session offers a rare opportunity for the community to learn more about the disease and better prepare families and those in healthcare to deal with its effects.

The Blue Ridge Electric Conference Room is located at 2375 NC Hwy. 163 in West Jefferson.

For more information or to reserve your spot, call Patricia Calloway, Executive Director of Ashe Services for Aging, Inc., in West Jefferson at 336-246-2461.