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Group photo of all of the staff on the dementia team
Brighton & Sussex Medical School



Time for Dementia is a highly ambitious programme and is leading the way in terms of a mandatory component of the curricula in Dementia education. The concept of Time for Dementia was conceived to provide undergraduate healthcare students with understanding, empathy, knowledge and compassion to support families living with dementia in the future.

The programme prepares students with these skills by providing longitudinal contact with a person living with dementia and their family carer. Students are paired and visit a family on six occasions over the course of two years. Students visit the same family throughout the programme.  Visits last between 1.5 – 2 hours duration. During this time, students and families spend time getting to know each other, and families share experiences about their day to day lives. This provides students with a unique insight into the life of someone living with dementia and that of their carer. 

Students are provided with an in-depth topic guide which they can use. The visits are designed to take on an informal structure which allows students to build a rapport with the family.  

Watch our video below to find out more about the programme. 


3 people in a group sitting around a table in discussion

How the visit works  

  • Before visits start each family is visited by Alzheimer’s Society to explain the visits, gain consent to participate and complete a risk assessment.
  • Students undertake a preparatory workshop so that they are clear about the programme and the expectations
  • Visits take place in the family home and students visit in pairs.
  • Visits last between 1-2 hours and will not exceed 2 hours, and take place 3 times per year, over a two year period. 
  • Families and students are encouraged to talk as a group. Students also spend time individually with each person to learn about different aspects of their lives. 
  • Alzheimer’s Society keep in touch with family throughout the programme, and address any welfare issues should they arise.
  • Students can contact the Time for Dementia team if they have any concerns during the programme. 
  • Following visits, students complete a reflective account about their visits. This helps to reinforce their learning.