SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Santa Barbara police officers received specialized Alzheimer's patient training to help better respond to calls involving patients.
The Santa Barbara Police Department partnered with the local Alzheimer’s Association Chapter to receive specialized training for all their patrol officers.
Police officers received the first portion of training called "Approaching Alzheimer's." They trained in two sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The training is designed to help officers be better equipped to responds to calls involving people with Alzheimer's or another type of dementia, as well as their caregivers.
The training is to provide a deeper understanding of the disease and provide best practices on how officers can respond to these patients.
The police department says officers often respond to dementia cases including calls for service and missing person reports where the patient with dementia is considered at-risk.
“We need to adapt and evolve as an agency,” said Sergeant Stephanie Trujillo. “I believe this training will help us better communicate and interact with members of our community living with Alzheimer’s and dementia, as well as their families.”
The interactive training sessions also serve as a space for the Alzheimer’s Association to receive feedback from police officers. Their feedback will help identify new opportunities to best serve the community through their partnership and sharing of resources.
The second portion of the training is expected to be held later this year.