Dementia demand warning15th March 2011
A London study has shown that government reforms of the health service will fail to meet the needs of people who have dementia.
The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) carried out the study, which showed that one third of GPs were not able to diagnose the condition.
The Department of Health said it was in the process of an audit of the disease.
The amount of people with dementia is predicted to increase as the age of the population rises, with over one million diagnoses in England by 2021.
Health Secretary Andrew Lansley has stated that the health service must carry out reforms if it is going to be capable of handling increasing numbers of patients.
However, the study revealed that only one in three GPs in London said they could diagnose dementia or offer sufferers the support they needed.
Current rates for dementia diagnoses stand at about 40%. The study reported sub-standard service for people aged above 80 years old and from ethnic minorities.
Associate director at the think-tank Rick Muir said: "GPs admit that they do not have the skills to deal with this growing care crisis."
"It is far from clear that changes will rise to the challenge. It's essential under the new commissioning framework that both GPs and social care commissioners are held truly accountable. If this doesn't happen, many vulnerable elderly people will not get the care they need."
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Title: Dementia demand warning
Author: Jess Laurence
Article Id: 17876
Date Added: 15th Mar 2011