Hong Kah North is Singapore's second dementia-friendly community

A McDonald’s restaurant general manager sticking a window decal in an outlet at Yishun, indicating it is dementia-friendly.
A McDonald’s restaurant general manager sticking a window decal in an outlet at Yishun, indicating it is dementia-friendly. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Over the past year, volunteers and shopkeepers in Hong Kah North have been trained to spot the tell-tale signs of dementia and lend a hand where needed.

The area was officially launched as Singapore's second dementia-friendly community by Senior Minister of State for Health Amy Khor on Saturday morning (March 19).

The first, a pilot project in Chong Pang, was started by Khoo Teck Puat Hospital and the Lien Foundation, in collaboration with the Agency for Integrated Care.

In such communities, volunteers are trained to look out for those with the symptoms of dementia - such as aimless wandering - and offer help.

These people, known as Dementia Friends, include residents as well as business owners. There are 139 of them in Hong Kah North.

Hong Kah North has also set up a network of five Go-To Points where members of the public can take dementia sufferers so that they can be linked with their caregivers.

These are located in places such as community clubs.

Other upcoming dementia-friendly communities, such as Bedok, MacPherson and Queenstown, will also have such touchpoints.