A $30 million dementia-specific village due to open at Cardiff in August will help generate 150 new jobs in the region.
The new aged care facility will have a streetscape with shops, a hairdresser, workshop, and a chapel to create a community environment "as much like home" as possible for people with dementia, HammondCare chief executive, Dr Stephen Judd, said.
He said their delivery of a Specialist Dementia Care Program at Cardiff would offer better targeted support for people with severe behavioural and psychological symptoms who could not be well-supported in mainstream residential care.
"We would be the only provider in the Hunter that is going to be providing solely for people with dementia," he said. "We focus on dementia specifically. We think that if you try to be all things to all people within the one environment, you don't produce excellence in care - all it does is produce exhausted mediocrity."
HammondCare has expanded its presence as an aged care provider in Newcastle and Lake Macquarie, and is looking to recruit up to 150 care workers, registered nurses, and administration staff for both the new Cardiff facility, and another aged care facility in Waratah.
The Christian charity recently acquired Tinonee Gardens The Multicultural Village - which had previously been penalised by the Department of Health after officials deemed it an "immediate and severe risk" to the safety of residents.
The new owners have relaunched the facility as HammondCare Waratah.
"We have recently taken on a service at Waratah as well, which had run into some difficulties, but the service at Cardiff is part of what we do around the country in providing dementia-specific services that are purpose-built," Dr Judd said.
"It is not a large service. There are small domestic cottages and apartments with nine-to-15 residents in each, and they operate as a household."
HammondCare Cardiff would be home to 99 residents with severe symptoms of dementia.
"I don't particularly like the term 'dementia village', but it does mean that people can move around freely, and go to the shops or the chapel - just as they would in their own suburb," Dr Judd said.
"It's promoting dignity and self respect."
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