Writing Excellence - Healthcare Professionals

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Pain in people with dementia: A silent tragedy

by Hanover Communications for Napp Pharmaceuticals

Summary of work

Chronic pain is common among older people. However, people with dementia often have trouble communicating, which may mean they are unable to tell someone if a physical problem, such as pain, exists. However, there was little awareness of the issue and there was little in the way of literature or educational materials to advise carers on how to spot signs of chronic pain in people who cannot communicate. The See Change: Think Pain campaign and report highlighted existing evidence and showcased new evidence to illustrate the extent of this issue. In addition, it provided best practice examples, a compelling visual to help carers and care home employees to help spot this problem and provided national policy recommendations to help ensure increased awareness.

Judges’ comments

Gaining points for originality, this was a brave move to aim at healthcare professionals and lay carers within a neglected area. It was interesting and felt like a genuine campaign that would benefit those who need it. The idea, its design - with a useful mnemonic - and its overall simplicity were great.