GPs told to boost dementia diagnoses

GP surgeries will be sent 'dementia toolkits' and asked to improve detection of dementia as part of a new scheme championed by prime minister David Cameron.

Prime minister David Cameron: dementia challenge must not be underestimated
Prime minister David Cameron: dementia challenge must not be underestimated

The toolkits will 'better equip' GPs to spot the condition and are one of a raft of new measures aiming to improve dementia care.

One million people will be trained in community centres as 'Dementia Friends' to recognise symptoms in friends and family members and to support those with the condition.

Prime minister David Cameron said society needed to be 'more understanding' of dementia, which affects nearly 700,000 people in England. The number affected is set to double within three decades.

In March, ministers announced memory checks would be added to the NHS Health Checks scheme from April 2013.

The GP toolkit is an information pack setting out how GPs can support patients with suspected dementia as their condition develops. It will give GPs an overview of local services and voluntary groups to which they can direct patients.

Under the latest plans, almost £10m will be awarded to dementia research, a £50m fund will pay for adaptations to hospital wards and care homes, and education projects will run in schools. A £1m prize will be awarded to the PCT or hospital that can boost diagnosis rates by the greatest margin.

Mr Cameron said: 'We cannot underestimate the challenge we face in dealing with dementia in our country.

'There are already nearly 700,000 sufferers in England alone but less than half are diagnosed and general awareness about the condition is shockingly low.'

Health secretary Jeremy Hunt said: 'I want Britain to be one of the best places in Europe for dementia care.'

Jeremy Hughes, chief executive of Alzheimer’s Society, said: 'Day-to-day tasks such as going to the shop or catching a bus can become increasingly difficult for people with dementia. Without a helping hand, this can mean people are left feeling isolated, unable to be part of their community and in some cases even unable to continue living at home.'

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

Coronavirus: Key guidance GPs need to know about COVID-19

Coronavirus: Key guidance GPs need to know about COVID-19

GPonline provides an overview of the key guidance relating to coronavirus, including...

GPs told to restore patient activity to pre-pandemic levels in new NHS England guidance

GPs told to restore patient activity to pre-pandemic levels in new NHS England guidance

GP practices have been instructed to increase activity, 'make rapid progress' on...

How to deal with patient requests for face covering exemption letters

How to deal with patient requests for face covering exemption letters

MDU medico-legal advisers Dr Ellie Mein provides advice for GPs on dealing with patients...

Should remote consultations be the default after COVID-19?

Should remote consultations be the default after COVID-19?

Health secretary Matt Hancock has suggested that general practice should follow a...

Government changes self isolation rules for GPs returning from abroad

Government changes self isolation rules for GPs returning from abroad

GPs and other healthcare professionals in England will now be required to self isolate...

GPs urge caution over health secretary's push for 'all' consultations to be remote

GPs urge caution over health secretary's push for 'all' consultations to be remote

GPs have accused the health secretary of failing to understand ‘the importance of...