Tamar Memory Assessment Service accredited as ‘Excellent’

Cornwall’s Memory Assessment Clinics have received the highest level of recognition by the Memory Services National Accreditation Programme (MSNAP).

Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust’s Tamar Memory Assessment Service has been rated as ‘Excellent’, receiving ratification from the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Special Committee for Professional Practice and Ethics (SCPPE). ‘Excellent’ is the highest accreditation status available and is achieved following an extensive self-review, peer review and lengthy and rigorous audit against more than a hundred National Standards.

The memory assessment service provides expert assessment to anyone worried about their or a loved one’s memory or think they may have dementia. Early assessment and diagnosis is crucial when identifying the right treatment and ensuring our patients receive the treatment and support they need to maintain a good quality of life. The service is run by specially trained Memory Assessment Practitioners including nurses, doctors and occupational therapists. Generally referrals come from the person’s GP and contain routine blood tests and past medical history. The Memory Service Practitioners use a variety of assessment tools to measure different aspects of a patient’s cognitive function e.g. how they perceive, register, store, retrieve and use information.

Following a diagnosis of a dementia, post diagnostic support is offered as well as Cognitive Stimulation Therapy which is facilitated by the Occupational Therapist. The person with dementia is kept on the Memory Assessment Practitioner caseload unless their care needs become more complex and they need a higher degree of support from the Complex Care and Dementia team.

Clinical Lead for the Tamar Memory Assessment Service Allison O’Kelly says,

“We are delighted to have retained our ‘Excellent’ accreditation which we first achieved in 2012. We now have additional staff members, a wider geographical area, plus more GP surgeries to cover, but we have proved that the quality of our service has remained of the highest standard. I would like to thank our new and existing staff for their hard work over the past few months as we gathered evidence for our MSNAP review. Our achievement truly puts Cornwall on the map with other Memory Assessment Services all over the country.”