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  • Swimming prevents dementia, says report

    Swimming prevents dementia, says report

    15.11.19 Swimming is helping to save the health and social care system nearly £140 million every year in terms of expenditure on dementia. This is part of national body Swim England’s economic case for the activity in its new Value of Swimming report. Swim England is calling on the government and health care professionals to encourage swimming so as to “help people live longer, better, happier lives.” The organisation collected data on regular swimmers at more than 1,000 pools over 12 months and passed its findings to Sheffield Hallam University, which used a social value calculator tool to calculate cost savings to health and social care. According to this analysis, the largest health savings were made up from dementia (£139.5 million) and strokes (£100 million).

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  • Global funding scheme promotes projects focusing on brain health

    Global funding scheme promotes projects focusing on brain health

    14.11.19 A global funding awards programme recognising excellence in promoting brain health has been initiated by Alzheimer’s Society, the Alzheimer’s Association in the USA, and the Global Brain Health Institute. They said that the aim of the “Pilot Awards for Global Brain Health Leaders” was to support emerging leaders in brain health, ageing and dementia by funding small-scale projects, activities or studies to delay or prevent dementia. Among the 27 projects benefiting from overall funding of £533,000 this year are a study of air pollution and dementia in Brazil, an investigation of social media use as a possible precursor of cognitive decline in Egypt and a study of the effects of engagement in dance on people with dementia and their partners in the US. The funding is designed to enable participants to pilot test a project with a view to seeking further resources for scaling it up if successful.

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  • When are 'therapeutic untruths' in care homes just plain lies?

    When are 'therapeutic untruths' in care homes just plain lies?

    13.11.19 When can you lie to a care home resident? It was a hotly contested issue at UKDC last week, where delegates debated the use of “environmental lies” in care homes, such as fake windows with painted views, “bus stops” to which no bus ever comes, and disguised doors. “As a person with dementia when I go into a care home I do not want them to lie, either in the environment they create or in their actions,” said Keith Oliver, who opposed the motion that deceptive décor can play an important role in delivering person-centred care. It was an impassioned performance from Oliver, who has young onset dementia, which helped sway the audience from favouring environmental lies at the start of the debate to being firmly against by the end. But independent nurse consultant Lynne Phair, fought valiantly in favour of the motion and said there could be a therapeutic value in meeting the person with dementia in their own reality.

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  • Could new 'wonder drug' be too expensive for NHS?

    Could new 'wonder drug' be too expensive for NHS?

    12.11.19 A dementia wonder drug billed as possibly the “first new treatment in over 15 years” could be too expensive for the NHS to buy, Dr Adrian Ivinson, director of operations at the UK Dementia Research Institute has said. Speaking at the UK Dementia Congress (UKDC), organised by JDC, Ivinson said that “aducanumab”, an antibody treatment to slow down the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, could be available in Europe as soon as 2021. But afterwards he expressed concern about the costs. “A cost of £100,000 a year for a course of aducanumab wouldn’t be surprising,” he told JDC, “and that would be a very significant challenge for the NHS to afford.” Ivinson told UKDC that the aducanumab findings were a “game changer” and would reverse the exodus of companies which had begun following a series of setbacks in the search for antibody treatments.

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  • Worthy winners honoured at 10th National Dementia Care Awards

    Worthy winners honoured at 10th National Dementia Care Awards

    11.11.19 Professor Dawn Brooker scooped the Lifetime Achievement in Dementia Care 2019 Award at a glittering ceremony organised by the Journal of Dementia Care last Thursday. The 10th National Dementia Care Awards, held at Doncaster Racecourse immediately following UK Dementia Congress, saw a host of high achievers in dementia care rewarded for their exceptional work. In addition to Wendy Mitchell, who received her accolade for Exceptional Contribution by a Person Living with Dementia from Alzheimer’s Society CEO Jeremy Hughes, there were many other worthy award winners.

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  • Don't be fobbed off by wishful thinking, says Jeremy Hughes

    Don't be fobbed off by wishful thinking, says Jeremy Hughes

    11.11.19 Alzheimer’s Society chief executive Jeremy Hughes told a packed UKDC plenary session not to be “fobbed off” by the next government through any wishful thinking about dementia care after the general election. “My message to go out loud and clear from this conference today is that we need all political parties to commit to ending the injustice for people with dementia,” he said. “It’s not just about funding, we need investment to improve the quality of dementia care. Two out of five home care workers don’t just have inadequate dementia training, they have none. That is a scandal and it shouldn’t be allowed – it should be illegal.”

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  • E-Newsletter - 8 Nov 2019

    E-Newsletter - 8 Nov 2019

    Here is this week’s round-up of dementia care news, stories and comment. This week's topics include reports from UKDC, a Value of Swimming report and a global funding scheme promoting brain health. It is an editor's selection which we hope you will enjoy.

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  • Sheffield 'Remember When Cafe' scoops local business award

    Sheffield 'Remember When Cafe' scoops local business award

    4.11.19 Sheffield’s Remember When Café has scooped a top local award for its special welcome to people with dementia. The café, awarded first prize for Age Friendly Sheffield Business, was described by the awards organisers as “a lovely place that caters well for everyone but is especially welcoming to older people and people with dementia”. The organisers, Age Better Sheffield, Lai Yin Association and Age UK Sheffield, praised the café for its regular singing sessions led by a paid singer. Members of the public were asked to nominate businesses for the award, one of whom said of Remember When: “Every time I visit with my mother who has Alzheimer’s, she is made to feel welcome, treated as an individual and treated with dignity and respect”.

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  • World Dementia Council told dementia threat is same as HIV/AIDS

    World Dementia Council told dementia threat is same as HIV/AIDS

    01.11.19 Dementia is an under-funded and overlooked area of medicine just like HIV/AIDS in the early days, the Dutch health minister has told a meeting of the World Dementia Council in Japan. Speaking on behalf of the Dutch government Hugo de Jonge said dementia posed a similar threat to global health and that the same sense of urgency was needed in medical research. “Only when it became clear how quickly the epidemic of HIV/AIDS was taking hold... taking millions of lives around the globe, did a global awareness emerge,” de Jonge was quoted in the Guardian as saying.
    De Jonge said that nearly 75 million people worldwide would have dementia by 2030, when the cost of care would be £1.6 trillion annually. “No one should be in any doubt: dementia is one of the biggest medical and social challenges we’ll face in the years ahead. In some countries, it already is the main cause of death.”

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  • Alzheimer Scotland says football study findings are 'conclusive'

    Alzheimer Scotland says football study findings are 'conclusive'

    31.10.19 Alzheimer Scotland described the Glasgow University finding that footballers had an elevated risk of neurodegenerative disease (see above) as “conclusive evidence” that there is a definitive link between the professional game and a higher incidence of dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases. “This was an exceptionally robust study and given the scale of the findings there must now be no time lost in moving forward further research to properly define what the main risk factors are and indeed determining what must be done to minimise them,” said the charity’s chief executive Henry Simmons.

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