Last few months of our MCI course!


As Brain Awareness Week closes, we wanted to share that our mild cognitive impairment (MCI) course, which includes a huge amount of content around brain health promotion and optimisation, will be closing this year. You have a couple of months left to access the material, before we take a pause and review the content.

There has been a significant shift in the last few years towards brain health as an important part of public health and healthcare optimisation, not only in an effort to reduce the likelihood of dementia, but in maximising health and positive outcomes for people with other neurological conditions, including multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson's, epilepsy and stroke (WHO 2022; Giovannoni 2016).

This year, the European Association of Neurology have established a brain health strategy group specifically to address the importance of promoting, protecting and preserving brain health to reduce incidence, and optimise the lives of those with neurological disease (EAN 2024).

Image from the EAN Brain Health Strategy 2024

As a result, we're reviewing how best to provide education around brain health and cognitive care not only in the general populace, but also as it pertains to those living with a neurological condition.

In celebration of our current course, here's a quick review of three years of MCI education, and an invitation to grab that education quickly before it's taken off our platform at the end of May.

3 years of mild cognitive impairment

In 2021 we were approached by Prof Ross Dunne, then a speaker for Dementia Academy, to support non-profit Dementia United in producing a short online course for mild cognitive impairment (MCI) aimed at the greater Manchester area.

'Excellent topics; the broad content, a complete overview of issues relevant to MCI.'

'[The course] makes me re-evaluate how we do things and how it comes over from the patient view.'

Since then we have educated 370 healthcare professionals from a wide variety of roles and backgrounds. The education covered brain health promotion, MCI, and dementia prevention, and was rated excellent or good by 95% of delegates.

370 healthcare professionals educated over 3 years across a wide variety of roles

95% rate the quality education as excellent or good

79% strongly agree or agree that they will alter their practice as a result of the education

The most common changes to practise across the 3 years:

  • download and use DIAMOND Lewy toolkit

  • add a REM sleep behaviour question in clinic

  • initiate sensory impairment screening

  • formalise medication reviews to reduce anticholinergic burden

  • provide lifestyle advice and modification

  • begin to provide patient education at 'diagnosis' of MCI

  • make changes to internal teaching content

'Very helpful to focus on prevention and lifestyle interventions. Training is mostly focused on diagnosing and treating…I will think about how to implement this in practice.'

After three years, each bringing a new iteration of the course in response to delegate interests and requests, we are removing this course on 31st May this year. The eight modules will remain online until then, allowing current delegates to complete the course, and we will continue to give access to any last-minute applicants.

'The perspective of different occupations into cognitive impairment offers useful understanding.'

'Interesting about the REM sleep as aware patients with LBD do experience rem sleep issues but had not thought of it as a symptom prior to diagnosis.'

Thee lasting impact of the course has been captured in two publications; our in-house education with impact report Education with impact – Quality improvement in mild cognitive impairment (MCI): Stories from across the UK and Ireland; April 2022, and a peer-reviewed article in the British Journal of Neuroscience Nursing Active promotion of brain health is an essential part of neurological management and dementia prevention (Peel & Fox 2023).

You can find out more about years 1 and 2 of the course here, or quickly register for the course online - there is around 8 hours of learning, and you still have a couple of months to complete it!

Promoting prevention, supporting management

Led by proactive clinicians determined to see improvement in the way we prevent, diagnose and manage dementias, Dementia Academy supports healthcare professionals with the latest tools, resources and courses to do just that.