Specialist Dementia Care Program (SDCP)

Alzheimer’s Queensland, in partnership with the Federal Government’s Department of Health, has created a purpose-built, Specialist Dementia Care Program (SDCP).

Located in McNally House, Upper Mount Gravatt, our SDCP unit provides a higher level of care for those exhibiting very severe behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia, who  are unable to be effectively cared for by traditional aged care services.

Our SDCP unit delivers care in a dedicated, dementia-friendly environment. Our core focus is to stabilise and reduce an individual’s symptoms, while our end goal is to transition the individual to a less intensive care setting.

Our SDCP unit’s dementia-friendly and dementia-enabling design principles serve to ensure all individuals feel protected, safe and respected within our facility.

All specialist staff working in our SDCP unit have been specifically recruited and trained to optimally service our resident’s needs.

Philosophy of care and care approach

Our SDCP unit is modelled on providing the highest level of quality care and safety for all individuals, utilising a person-centred and goal-orientated philosophy. All residents have access to medical specialists, to ensure appropriate clinical oversight and care. As an SDCP provider, Alzheimer’s Queensland is responsible for directly sourcing and funding allied health services, such as psychologists, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, dieticians, dentists, oral hygienists, speech pathologists and other necessary allied healthcare professionals.

How long is care required?

Primarily, our residents will remain within our SDCP until they are stabilised and their symptoms are controlled, before we enable them to transition to a less intensive care setting. We anticipate the usual length of stay in a specialist dementia care unit is up to 12 months.

Eligibility for the SDCP unit

Those who qualify for entry to our SCDP unit include:

  • People with very severe behavioural and psychologist symptoms of dementia (BDSP), generally behaviours classified as, or equivalent to, Tier 6 in the Brodaty et. al. model 2; and
  • Those who are unable to be appropriately cared for by mainstream aged care services.

Referral pathways

Existing aged care recipients, including 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 www.dementia.com.au or 1800 699 799.

Security of tenure for the SDCP unit

Alzheimer’s Queensland works with each resident and their family, to ensure a smooth transition following a period of care in our SDCP unit. Should the transition prove challenging however, security of tenure requirements will protect the rights of both parties, by establishing circumstances in which a provider can ask a care recipient to leave the SDCP unit, but must provide the resident with a suitable transfer option.


Standard aged care fees apply including:

  • Basic daily care fee
  • Accommodation payment/contribution
  • Means tested care fee.

Accommodation Charges

Maximum refundable accommodation deposit (RAD) of $550,000 or (DAP) $95.08; or a combination of both, for example (RAD) $275,000 and (DAP) $47.54.

Figures based on MPIR as at 6.31% from 1 October 2022.

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