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Worries over dementia drive

2nd April 2014

The government want more of the estimated 670,000 people with dementia to be formally diagnosed by 2015.

alzheimers1GP, Dr Martin Brunet, wrote an article in the British Medical Journal, warning that the government's plans could lead to an over-diagnosis.

Two-thirds of dementia sufferers in the UK are women. There is no cure for the disease, but there is some evidence that access to drug treatment and services can help people remain independent for longer.

Brunet also highlighted that there were no guarantees the figures were correct. He also suggested that the desire to drive up diagnosis rates could lead to unreliable statistics.

"The potential harms inherent in setting targets for diagnoses have not been analysed despite the obvious danger that working towards targets can lead to perverse behaviours and outcomes."

 

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