Dementia 2015: Aiming higher to transform lives is Alzheimer's Society's fourth annual report looking at quality of life for people with dementia in England. It contains the results of our annual survey of people with dementia and their carers, and an assessment of what is currently in place and needs to be done to improve dementia care and support in England over the next five years.
Now is the crucial turning point for dementia, and the government's commitment to dementia needs to be met by a fully-fledged national action plan for the 2020 challenge.
Our report provides a snapshot of how well people are living with dementia, what support they are receiving and what barriers they face to living well. It makes practical recommendations to the new government on the steps that need to be taken to make quality of life better for people with dementia.
Together we must:
- Produce a national, funded action plan to deliver the Prime Minister's challenge on dementia 2020
- Take action on risk management
- Improve diagnosis and transform support after diagnosis
- Support carers
- Deliver dementia-friendly health and care settings
- Tackle issues in dementia education, training and workforce
- Drive forward dementia-friendly communities
- Make the UK a leader in transformational dementia research
- 68% of people who responded to our survey said that they felt they were living well with dementia. 15% said they were not and 17% said they did not know.
- Despite this positive outlook in people's overall feeling, 53% of people responding to our survey said they had felt anxious or depressed recently. 36% said they had not and 11% said they didn't know.
- The feeling of anxiety or depression was highest among those who had started experiencing symptoms most recently.
- 49% of respondents said their carer did not receive help. 39% said they did and 12% said they didn't know.
- Half of people (49%) of people with dementia said they were not getting enough support from the government.
- 75% of people who responded to the survey said that they had another health condition in addition to dementia.
We also commissioned a survey of GPs for the report which found:
- Half of GPs (50%) don't think their patients with dementia get enough support from the NHS.
- Over two thirds (67%) of GPs don't think their patients with dementia get enough support from social services.
- More than three quarters (77%) of GPs think their patients are having to rely on family members as they don't get enough support from health and adult social services. 73% said they have to rely on unpaid carers (friend, neighbours etc).