Good Shepherd Lodge and Kerrisdale Gardens

Specialised Dementia Care

AllonbyStaffPic-scaledWe are excited to announce that Good Shepherd Lodge will be one of three Specialist Dementia Care Units in Queensland to improve services for people with dementia who have the most complex needs.  The program is funded by Commonwealth Government under the Specialist Dementia Care Program.

Chief Executive Officer Therese White said the program will allow Good Shepherd Lodge to support the people of the Nth Qld region.  We will be working in conjunction with Government and referral agencies to improve the outcomes for these residents who are faced with significant challenges in their day to day living.

Specialist Dementia Care Program (SDCP)

Good Shepherd Lodge in partnership with the Australian Government Department of Health, has delivered a purpose-built Specialist Dementia Care Program (SDCP) unit.  Barbara Cunningham has been appointed as Specialist Dementia Coordinator of the unit which provides a higher level of care for those exhibiting very severe behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia and are unable to be effectively cared for by traditional aged care services.

The specialist unit known as ‘Allonby’ delivers care in a dedicated dementia friendly environment, with a core focus on stabilising and reducing the individual’s symptoms, with an end goal to transition them to a less intensive care setting.

Allonby has been renovated with dementia friendly and dementia enabling design principles to ensure all individuals feel protected, safe and respected within the facility.

All specialists staff working in this unit have been specifically recruited and trained to service resident’s needs.


Philosophy of care and care approach

The SDCP unit is modelled on the highest level of quality care and safety for all individuals using a person-centred and goal orientated philosophy.  The SDCP model ensures all residents have access to medical specialists to ensure appropriate clinical oversight and care.


How long is care required

Residents will remain within the SDCP until stabilised and symptoms are reduced before transition to a less intensive care setting.  It is expected that the usual length of stay in a specialist dementia care unit will be up to 12 months.


Eligibility for the SDCP unit

The following identifies if an individual is eligible to enter the SDCP:

The behaviours and psychological symptoms of the person:

  1. are primarily as a result of dementia
  2. are severe or very severe (aggression, severe agitation, vocalisation)
  3. Those who are unable to be appropriately cared for by mainstream aged care services and have not responded to trials of other specialist services.


How to Make a Referral

Anyone can make a referral. This includes existing aged care recipients from Commonwealth Home Support Programme services, home care, flexible care or residential care and people not receiving aged care (i.e. transitioning from hospital or other environments) can be referred for assessment through Dementia Support Australia at:  or call 1800 699 799


Security of Tenure

Good Shepherd Lodge will work with residents and their family to ensure a smooth transition out of the SDCU.  However in the event it has not been successful, there is the opportunity for the resident to return to the unit to continue stabilising their symptoms.



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