Make dementia a priority
Any strategy, any approach, #PlanD doesn’t change.
In December last year, we told the Government that dementia doesn’t wait. A whole system challenge like dementia, needs a whole system solution, and a long-term plan to set this in motion.
Now, with the development of the Major Conditions Strategy, plans, for the biggest health care challenges of our time, are being housed under one roof - dementia included.
But even with this change, our calls for dementia remain the same. It’s time for #PlanD.
Stand with us to create change
Whether you have a personal connection to dementia, or you want to stand with those who do, we need you to get involved.
Together, we can make a difference to the lives of the 900,000 people living with dementia and their loved ones.
Dementia is one of the greatest health challenges facing society, both in the UK and around the world.
Of the top ten causes of death worldwide, dementia is the only one that can’t be cured, stopped, or even slowed down.
By 2040, it is estimated dementia will cost the UK economy £94.1 billion.
What is Alzheimer's Society calling for?
With the evidence gathered, analysed, and previously set to be published in the 10-Year Plan, there is no excuse for delay. As before, these strong words, must be translated into action, with people affected by dementia in the driving seat.
As one of the 6 focuses for the Major Conditions Strategy, our calls are front and centre. They are simple, we need a strategy that will:
- Drive forward the improvement of dementia diagnosis rates through a funded plan
- Develop strategies to support diagnosis methods and deliver access to breakthrough treatments as soon as they become available
- Deliver an improved pathway for people living with dementia navigating the health and social care system
- Demonstrate how data has underpinned the delivery of the Major Conditions Strategy
What was the 10-Year Plan for Dementia?
In May 2022, the then Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Sajid Javid, announced his goals for an ambitious 10-year plan for dementia at the Alzheimer’s Society annual conference. We were thrilled dementia was finally being prioritised.
But by October 2022, we realised progress had stagnated on the promised 10-year plan, so we posed over 26 questions to Government asking for progress updates. Each and every time, they responded we’d hear more ‘in due course’.
Reaching December 2022, consistent delays, a lack of clear direction, and short-term thinking from Government was costing the 900,000 people living by dementia precious time and hope. So, we sent them a clear message: dementia doesn’t wait for ‘due course’.
After handing in our letter to the Prime Minister in January 2023 and shouting as loud as we could, we saw movement on this call as the Government announced the Major Conditions Strategy, housing plans for the biggest healthcare challenges of our time, including dementia, under one roof.
We didn't rest here. In June 2023, we handed in our open letter to the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Steve Barclay MP, calling on him to listen to the voices of lived experience, ensure evidence previously gathered for the 10-year plan is included in the Strategy, and finally make dementia a political priority.
Dementia’s inclusion in the Major Conditions Strategy was the first big achievement for our #PlanD campaigning work. Now, with a response from Steve Barclay’s team, we’ve had our second - we know they’ve heard our calls.
It is still yet to be seen whether the scale of the challenge, and needs of people living with dementia, are accurately represented in the Strategy, but through the dedication of our campaigners, we know we are making headway.
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