Financial sector encouraged to invest in Better banking for people with dementia

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Dementia Australia has proudly launched ‘Better banking for people with dementia’ - a new online education tool for banks and financial sector staff to learn about the impact of dementia and how to provide improved services for people living with dementia, their families and carers.

Dementia Australia Chair and former Chair of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) Professor Graeme Samuel AC said ‘Better banking for people with dementia’ is an invaluable education program everyone in the Australian financial sector should undertake.

“Better banking for people with dementia’ requires only one hour to complete yet provides a comprehensive overview of dementia and advice on how to better meet the financial needs of people living with dementia,” Professor Samuel said.

“With an estimated 459,000 Australians living with dementia in 2020 and numbers on the rise, now is the time for banks and the financial sector to learn about dementia and how to best serve customers impacted by the disease.”

‘Better banking for people with dementia’ is a simple to use online program with interactive videos, quizzes, clickable graphics and flashcards, all designed to effectively engage and educate the banking sector.

Alongside providing dementia education and guidance on how to deliver improved customer service for people living with dementia and their carers, ‘Better banking for people with dementia’ has a strong focus on financial elder abuse.

Unfortunately people living with dementia are increasingly vulnerable to financial abuse as dementia progresses, due to the gradual loss of ability and capacity to manage financial affairs.

Financial abuse of people living with dementia is often perpetrated by people entrusted to manage the money and financial affairs of something living with dementia. Sadly, sometimes these are family members or friends. Financial abuse can sometimes be hard to detect which is why ‘Better banking for people with dementia’ explores the ‘red flags’ of financial elder abuse and what banking and financial services staff can do about it.

Extensive research and development was undertaken in creating ‘Better banking for people with dementia’ including consultation with Australians living with dementia and their carers, Bendigo Bank, Victoria Police and The Hon Dr Kay Patterson AO, Age Discrimination Commissioner.

Marnie Baker, Managing Director Bendigo Bank said ‘Better banking for people with dementia’ has been tested by Bendigo Bank staff with overwhelmingly positive feedback to-date.

“The increasing number of Australians living with dementia deserve financial services provided by staff that are knowledgeable, understanding and compassionate towards their needs,” said Ms Baker.

“Better banking for people with dementia’ enhances the education and support Bendigo Bank staff have and creates the dementia-friendly experience our customers should expect.”

For enquires regarding ‘Better banking for people with dementia’ please contact the Centre for Dementia Learning on 1300 DEMENTIA (1300 336 368) or via email.

Dementia Australia wishes to thank Bendigo Bank for its support of the development of ‘Better banking for people with dementia’.