I am very keen to make sure that there is a long term commitment and a strategy for dementia in Eddisbury.
Following the launch of the Alzheimer’s Society report, ‘Dementia 2014: Opportunity for Change’, I held a Dementia Awareness Day and I became the first AM in Wales to become a Dementia Friend.
The report last year stated that there were 835,000 people in the UK who have dementia and called for 14 actions to ensure that people affected by dementia can live well with the condition.
Among the recommendations, the report calls for diagnosis across the UK to be up to 75% by 2017; 12 weeks from referral to diagnosis; an appropriately resourced national strategy and dementia research should receive a level of investment which matches the economic and human cost of the condition.
The numbers of people in the UK with dementia now costs the UK economy £26 billion a year and this is set to rise. There is an estimated 670,000 people in the UK act who as primary carers for people with dementia and this saves the state £11 billion per year.
Two-thirds of people with dementia live in the community, one-third live alone in their own homes and one-third of people with dementia live in care homes with up to 70% of care home residents in the UK suffering from dementia or significant memory problems.
At the moment there is no cure for dementia and we need to make sure that there is long term help and support available for sufferers and those who have to care for them.
NHS England recently announced an investment of £5million for GP’s to increase identification of people with dementia and we need to be also looking at other ways we can all help.