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Amazing Dementia Village Cares for Advanced Alzheimer’s

Fresh air and exercise, improved appetite, fewer medications and happier family visits typify the world's first "Dementia Village". See how an inspired nursing home manager took a dreary hospital and turned it into a respect-filled, compassionate community.
Hogeweyk dementia village in Netherlands

How would you prefer to spend the last years of your life: in a sterile, hospital-like institution or in a village with a supermarket, pub, theater and park within easy walking distance? The answer seems obvious now, but when Yvonne van Amerongen helped develop the groundbreaking Hogeweyk dementia care center in Amsterdam nearly 30 years ago, it was seen as a risky break from tradition. Journey with van Amerongen to Hogeweyk and get a glimpse at what a reimagined nursing home based on freedom, meaning and social life could look like — and still does.


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March 31, 2014 2:27 pm

Although we have found numerous accounts of research conducted with kids to strengthen cognitive function, we are curious to learn what independent research exists in the senior community in a chess learning environment.

August 14, 2014 7:29 pm

I believe this is a very good idea and I love this!We need some here in the United States!!

Reply to  Unknown
November 1, 2015 11:18 am

This would be great maybe for the first two stages but after that much more care and supervision is needed. I was a care giver for my husband for six years in our home. Alzheimer's is so much more devastating for everyone then what your showing here. There is severe hallucinations, loss of verbal communications, loss of all skills for simple task, motor skills, incontinence both ways and so much more. More understanding of Alzheimer's and dementia is needed and help is needed for the care givers also. Perhaps set down with real care givers who have walked the long heart breaking journey with their loved ones and you will discover the truth of what living with Alzheimer's is all about. You story above is sadly a mere drop in the bucket. I am thankful they have this for the early stage.

August 20, 2014 8:51 pm

As an Early Alzheimer's person, I have told my family that I want to be euthanized when I get severely impaired. This village changes my mind about that! Please, United States, create these villages here in America!!

Reply to  Helen
November 6, 2015 11:46 am

Centers like this only happen in socialist countries. It is too expensive. Believe me, they are not doing dementia care better over there. High functioning people who can do well in a place like that can probably live in a regular nursing home.

Joy and peace do exist in later stages of dementia. I spend my whole day witnessing it.

You want to find a "memory care" center that focuses on moderate to severe residents — someplace with a loving, compassionate staff. Allow your family, staff, and others to LOVE you wherever you happen to be in the dementia process. Let God decide when you leave this earth.

March 15, 2015 1:23 pm

Way too EXPENSIVE! Most people couldn't even afford the nursing home costs here in the US. Will Medicaid cover that? Applying for Medicaid is quite a challenge for most middle-class families. Dementia patients need 24/7 care especially with the Restraint-Free Law.

Reply to  Anonymous
March 19, 2015 7:13 pm

It looks like you 'get it'. This is not realistic. This is a fantasy.

Where are the people/residents who scream or cry for hours on end? Where are the people/residents who are panicked & scared out of their mind 24 hours a day?
Where are the people/residents who cant find their way to the bathroom or even the other side of their room much less to the other side of the compound?
Where are the people/residents who have forgotten how to walk?
Where are the people/residents who cant communicate in any form?
Where are the people/residents who are violent and hit others?
Where are the people/residents who act out sexually?
(And for anyone reading this, all the above are very common dementia behaviors.)
No, the people/residents shown are NOT 'severe', they are mild to moderate at best.

I have seen SEVERE I have lived with SEVERE.
The people shown are the easy, early stage victims.
I want to know how they deal with the real problem situations.
Reply to  Anonymous
March 19, 2015 9:05 pm

There is an old story about a man jogging past thousands of starfish washed up on the beach. He comes upon an elderly gentleman who, one-by-one, keeps bending down, picking up a starfish, and flinging it into the sea. He jogs up and says, "Hey there, with all these thousands of starfish drying up in the sun, you don't really believe you can make a difference, do you?" The elderly gentleman leans down, picks up a starfish, holds it in the air and as he flings it into the sea, says smartly, "Makes a difference to this one."

"Dementia Village" may not be realistic for everyone with dementia, but it is realistic for these folks.

Harold Weisberg
Harold Weisberg
Reply to  Anonymous
October 25, 2015 2:40 pm

Alzheimer's has seven stages. Every patient is different. How can you take a person in the seventh stage and threat them like a person in stage 3 or 4? My wife is in her 13th year with Alzheimer's and her neurologist said she is alive because she is home with special trained caregivers. She gets acupunture and physical training each week (88) She gets love since that is not a memory it is a feeling and it resides in your heart and soul.

March 29, 2017 7:53 pm

Red Door Realty has designed, for first time in USA, a Memory Care and Dementia Village, first project is for sale in Houston, Texas, seniors can roam in a secure mall and out doors in a secure courtyard. Mike Tanner 469-579-1245, Builders available TX to Florida to build in your market , Contact Me

Diane McDade
Diane McDade
Reply to  Unknown
January 8, 2018 1:06 am

So needed in all states. I care for my husband, and hope and pray to God, I am able to do so. But all will depend on how he becomes through the progression of this horrific disease.

B. Berger

B. Berger

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