Prescription for Life! Supporting those living with younger onset dementia

Document Type



The Lovell Foundation / Edith Cowan University / Mercy Aged and Community Care Ltd / The Bethanie Group


School of Nursing and Midwifery




Vafeas, C., Jacob, E., & White, S. (2017). Prescription for life! Supporting those living with younger onset dementia.

Available here


An interactive talking book designed to assist health workers to use a well-being approach to provide meaningful care for younger people living with dementia.

Challenges for people living with younger onset dementia (YOD) may be different than those for people who develop dementia at a later age. These challenges often include the loss of full-time employment, changing from being the caregiver to the one in need of care, managing the care of young and dependent family members, and managing cognitive decline whilst still having a strong, healthy body (Alzheimer’ s Australia 2015).

Needs as specific as these are often not considered by care providers who are used to caring for older people with dementia. This may result in limited understanding of ways in which care can be personally tailored to meet the needs of people living with YOD to improve the quality of life for them and their families.

After it was identified that few resources were available to assist employed carers with caring specifically for people with YOD, The Lovell Foundation teamed up with Edith Cowan University (ECU) and not-for-profit aged care and retirement living providers Bethanie and Mercy Health to develop this educational resource. Prescription For Life focuses on a well-being approach, with links to videos, audio and practical tips to help carers develop strategies to provide meaningful care.

The book caters for different learning styles, with audio links so the text can be listened to or read. It seeks to give readers a basic understanding of the types of dementia, an understanding of the wellness approach when caring for someone with YOD, and how to identify person-centred strategies to improve care.

It also incorporates pre- and post-knowledge tests, which will allow anyone who completes the book to be credited with 2.5 hours of professional development.

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