“It is rare to find a dementia care specialist with such engaging energy and deep credibility.”
Heather McKay is a licensed occupational therapist and dementia care specialist, consultant, and international trainer/speaker who is passionate about helping healthcare providers and the families of those with dementia to demystify dementia care. Through her own diverse experience as a:
- Healthcare provider and leader, and
- Family member of a beloved individual with dementia,
Heather has developed an engaging, measurement-based model for relating to each patient in whatever season.
Through her unique and relevant communication tools, and highly-approachable style, Heather becomes “one of us” to the groups she consults—helping front-line staff, leaders, and families to better understand dementia while ensuring physical safety and emotional well-being. As Heather states, “We need to start from a common understanding about dementia. My passion lies in equipping healthcare staff with a shared understanding and language so they can work side by side as a team. And then, we pay it forward to the families!”
A graduate of the Master’s of Occupational Therapy program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with an interdisciplinary certificate in aging, Heather received the Marlys Mitchell Pioneer Award for humanitarian values, knowledge, and visionary leadership. She developed her teaching and training skills in the areas of dementia and Alzheimer’s care and services through an extensive training internship with the Eastern North Carolina Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association. She is a recognized trainer for the Association and a member of Dementia Care Professionals of America and an often quoted expert and thought leader.
Proudly serving those who served for us, Heather is distinguished in many state veterans organizations and the Department of Veteran Affairs as “a civilian who goes above and beyond the call of duty.”
Today, Heather provides tremendous value in her keynote speaking, consulting, and workshops. Her clients include:
- Healthcare Organizations and National Associations
- Insurance Companies
- Universities, and
- Families and Community Groups.
She is the producer for several widely-distributed dementia care education DVDs—backed by the esteemed National Association of State Veterans Homes, Armed Forces Veterans Homes Foundation, AMVETS and Air Force Sergeants Association.