Hello all – extra blog today as 2 pieces of good news in the papers today. Dementia Friends has announced that it’s reached it’s 1 million target of Dementia Friends – MAGIC! – now let’s head for the second million!!. Also David Cameron has announced that all NHS staff will be given training in understanding dementia – why this hasn’t happened before, I just don’t understand, but at last the NHS is having to do what it should have automatically been doing….now we just need to make sure it happens and also that all parties will support all initiatives mentioned below!
I’m sure it’s being reported on in other newspapers but below is the Article from the Guardian today by Frances Perraudin – note, he also mentions the launch of the online service Join Dementia Research. I’m down in London on Tuesday at the launch – more news on next Tuesdays blog:
‘David Cameron has announced that all NHS staff – from hospital porters to surgeons – will be given training in understanding dementia, as part of a series of measures designed to tackle the condition.
Launching the next phase of the government’s “challenge on dementia” programme, the prime minister pledged £300m of investment into dementia research over the next parliament and announced the creation of a new global fund on dementia, which would see investors from the public and private sectors unite to fund a range of research projects.
Cameron also announced that an international dementia institute would be established in England within the next five years and an online and telephone service to facilitate people taking part in dementia research studies is to be launched next week.
Professor Alistair Burns, NHS England’s national clinical director for dementia, welcomed the announcement and said that awareness of dementia was at its highest level yet: “We are beginning to change the way society respects and treats people with dementia. We can change the lives of tens of thousands of people for the better if we can continue to raise awareness, invest in the search for new treatments, and most importantly improve the lives of people with dementia and their carers.”
David Cameron first launched a series of measures aimed at tackling dementia in 2012 before hosting the first ever dedicated G8 event on dementia in 2013. He announced funding for dementia research would rise to £66m by 2015, up from £26.6m in 2010.
It is estimated that there will be 1 million people living with dementia in the UK by 2025. Dementia is now one of the greatest burdens on global healthcare systems, costing an estimated £370bn – about 1% of the world’s GDP.
Global spending on dementia is five times lower than research on cancer, with only three new drugs making it on to the market in the last 15 years.
Andy Burnham MP, Labour’s shadow health secretary, welcomed the prime minister’s announcement, saying it would “help us face one of the greatest challenges of the 21st century”.
But he said that, as well as looking to the future, Cameron needs to do much more to help dementia sufferers now.
Burnham said: “Dementia sufferers, their families and carers are now paying spiralling care charges under this government. These are David Cameron’s hidden ‘dementia taxes’. Hundreds of thousands of vulnerable older people have lost social care support since David Cameron entered Downing Street.
“Social care in England is close to collapse but this Government is in denial about it. Labour is committed to ending the culture of slap-dash 15-minute care visits and employing an extra 5,000 care workers.”
p.s. Andy Burnham needs a ticking off for using the word ‘sufferer’ – maybe he needs to attend a Dementia Friends session!!!!!!!!