Dementia won’t go away.

I wrote about the growing problem of dementia only a week ago and stories are starting to appear in the press every other day.    In fact I have been writing about the subject ever since I started this blog.    (You can see all my earlier blogs by clicking on “Dementia ” in the Topics List.)

Perhaps it is finally dawning on everyone that this is a big issue which won’t go away and can’t be swept under the carpet.   No doubt the politicians will soon set up a Commission to see what can be done. That will put off needing to do anything about it for several more years.     Meanwhile sufferers get little or no help, other than from relatives who are often the first to notice the decline.

Six years ago I wrote a blog called “Left in the dark” about my concern that people were going undiagnosed by their GP’s, partly understandably, because of the lack of support available once the issue had been identified.

Now a six-year long research study at Cambridge University has echoed what I was saying.  It found that a third of those affected have not been formally diagnosed and  even those who are eventually diagnosed with the disease often wait three years before it is detected by their GP.

Yet I seem to remember David Cameron making this a priority for his Government.    He launched a “Dementia Challenge”  in 2012″ aimed at identifying more people with the disease.   £10million was given for dementia research.  Then in 2014 GP’s were offered a £55 bounty for every new case they identified.       There was a 25% increase in those diagnosed with dementia between September 2014 and March 2015.  A £4.4 million bonus for GP’s and another 80,000 older people condemned to a life of mental decline with very little further support.  Subsequently it was estimated that as many as half of these new cases were not in fact dementia.     The idea was quietly dropped after a year.

The Department of Health says it is investing £50million to make hospitals dementia friendly.   Whatever that means ?

So much for politicians promises!

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2 Responses to Dementia won’t go away.

  1. davidwfreeman237 says:

    The lastest Blog by John on ‘Dementia’, and the encouragement to visit some of the past blogs, has made me wonder, ‘’WHAT IS Dementia’’ no one has yet clinically defined it, and as I reread past blogs I am confronted with the words of ‘Alzheimer’s, Dementia, and the classic phrase ‘old age or as my children would say your growing older and more forgetful in life?
    Just reviewing Johns’ comments alone (not my response) of his ‘Blog’, lest we forget of Feb 4 2010, I am struck by the hard reality of cash, and what effect it has on society, and especially those of the older generation.
    The OXFORD UNIVERSITY figures, give interesting reading, both worldwide, but especially for the UK-Here I requote some of the figures:
    882,000 suffer with dementia of those 60% have Alzheimer’s, of those 31% are treated on the NHS, and another 37% are on long term care 2/3 of the people do not receive treatment (here we need the definition of Treatment).
    Costs, we now come to the money the total bill to the country [UK] is £27 billion of that £1.2 billion is spent from the NHS budget, £9 billion from the social services budget, The families and relatives ‘stump up £12.4 billion. [That leaves approx. £4 billion unaccounted for?]
    It is noted that the cost of care without treatment at the time of writing in 2010 is some £27,648 per year.
    An update of what the annual residential care home are as off today may be nearer £37,500 without medical, or social care? Which is the cost to a normal family with an aging relative, who may need 24 hours attendance and in a dedicated residential care home [not a nursing home]?
    Life has become more defined and the authorities has the desire to define everyone with a condition, except old age, and reduced mobility. This may help the authorities define on whom and who they spend money to help. With all these different areas of rational it is or has become difficult for the families, as to how they may seek financial help, and financial support for an elderly person living a reasonable life of independent living.
    In older age the media high light constantly those with a disability/infirmity, and wish to put us all in a mental grouping or of a restricted physical grouping, or both. The truth is somewhere between the two concepts, and as earlier ‘Blogs’ has become expressive of the need for safe and secure housing, with warmth and sustenance to support a modest way of living. The danger here is the tone of the ‘messages’ is that we all can live of the fat of the land, and demand a general standard of living for all! This does not work and encourage those families that have lived a modest way of living, with a modest pension, and income in retirement to be independent of the state, but totally reliant on the state. By the reverse side of the penny, those who have an asset which is rich in finance [such as property], due to today’s market have a large house, but the younger generation cannot in the current financial climate to purchase such assets in sufficient volume to support socially the richer generation who are due to retire and draw the state pension.
    Socially as a nation we need to provide housing for the elderly older generation especially, but that in some 75 years’ time when the average social age in the UK could be drastically reduced to the passing of those of geriatric age, can be used for housing of a younger age group, of mixed ability and sexual gender mix.
    Do we build tents or places of dwelling suitable only for this aging crisis some 10 or 25-30 years investment only? I personally hope not and that we develop a logical policy, of future in the long term, not just for the present.

  2. davidwfreeman237 says:

    One aspect of care in old age, is the fact of care in a residential environment for a married couple or partnership, so that the couple are not physically split either bodily or mentally. This aspect needs or requiures some further consideration, and thinking.

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