The Netherlands has created a special, gated village specifically for the elderly suffering from dementia. The gated village called Hogeweyk, is completely sustainable, and even contains a restaurant, a bar and a grocery store.
On the campus, 152 nurses, doctors and caregivers work around the clock to help patients as they need it, but they live a rather independent lifestyle. Because the community is gated and secure, the residents are free to roam about. From what Lee Slaughter (Theallenpartnership) has heard, they can take in a movie at the local theater, or they can stop for a bite to eat at the restaurant. They can even enjoy a leisurely stroll through the park before returning to their apartment.
Hogeweyk is, for all intents and purposes, a self contained village that promotes independence while still caring for and monitoring the elderly. It is considered a prototype that is likely to catch on in other European locations.
Whether or not such a village will be built in the United States remains to be seen, but the finding are absolutely positive, according to medical staff. According to researchers, the residents of the village are happier and healthier. They are also on less medication and feel a stronger sense of independence than residents of traditional nursing homes.