‘Only together,’ the charity’s first-ever influencing campaign, highlights the low level of specialist support currently available to families affected by dementia, and how access to quality care could be improved.
The key findings include: 77% of family carer respondents were dissatisfied with the support they received from primary care services, 82% of health care professionals said they have limited time and capacity for appointments, and 58% of the charity’s own dementia specialist nurses agreed there is a lack of information and support provided to people with dementia.
The findings present a stark account of the challenges facing families with dementia. The campaign report’s recommendations outline how families need access to tailored information and that the charity’s dementia specialist nurses can support in connecting up a still fractured system, through close working with families and healthcare professionals.
The ongoing effects of coronavirus have exacerbated the challenges which family carers face. Some of the key issues which carers raised for the report include: 83% of carers have had fewer opportunities to take a break from their caring role, 86% reported a decline in their own mental wellbeing and a further 62% are worried about whether they can continue to care for the person with dementia at home following the arrival of the pandemic.
To read the full report and its recommendations/vision paper, please see www.dementiauk.org/onlytogether
The charity’s Admiral Nurses work alongside families with dementia, giving compassionate one-to-one support, expert guidance and practical solutions which can be hard to find elsewhere. They are continually trained, developed and supported by Dementia UK.
Chief Admiral Nurse and CEO at Dementia UK, Dr Hilda Hayo said: “Families affected by dementia have always been in the dark, but even more so during the pandemic. Information about how the condition could affect them and who to turn to in times of need has been lacking. Added to this is a climate where community support services are all but drying up.
“Our Facing it alone report highlights the importance of working together to improve dementia specialist support for the thousands of families living with dementia. Our dementia specialist nurses can be at the heart of this approach, allowing GPs and other healthcare professionals to understand the complexities of the condition, and for families to live a future with more confidence and less fear.”
Dementia UK is calling on families, GPs and health professionals to act in a number of ways:
- By sharing experiences of best practice;
- Highlighting where provision is lacking; and
- Work with the charity in local areas to improve dementia specialist services
If you would like to find out more about how you can support the campaign, please visit: www.dementiauk.org/onlytogether