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  • Scottish Government misses post-diagnostic care targets

    Scottish Government misses post-diagnostic care targets

    11.02.19 The Scottish Government has run into controversy after missing dementia care targets by a wide margin. New figures from NHS Scotland reveal that just 39% of people newly diagnosed with the condition got post-diagnostic support, even though the government promised five years ago that everyone newly diagnosed would receive a minimum of 12 months’ support. Of the 17,496 people diagnosed north of the border in 2016/17, only 6,830 got post-diagnostic support according to the figures. The charity Age Scotland branded the figures as “inexcusable”. Age Scotland chief executive Brian Sloan added: “Not only have 61% of people newly diagnosed with dementia gone without the promised care, but less than half of the total were actually referred in the first place. This is clearly not good enough and is a staggering disservice to those living with dementia, their carers and family.”

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  • E-Newsletter 8 Feb 2019

    E-Newsletter 8 Feb 2019

    I am delighted to bring you my week’s round-up of dementia care news, stories and comment. This week's topics include a new low cost wifi service for care homes and a new MOOC (massive open online course) for supporting people with advanced dementia. It is an editor's selection which I hope you will enjoy.

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  • Genie robot to support independent living

    Genie robot to support independent living

    08.02.19 Computer technologists in Gloucestershire are working on a small robot to support independent living among older people, incorporating “dementia and elderly care technologies to provide reminiscence and memory stimulation”. The Genie Connect robot, developed by the University of Gloucestershire and the company Services Robotics, can answer questions, give reminders and project reminiscence photos and videos on to a screen in response to verbal commands. It is wireless and can sit on a side table. According to a report on the Punchline Gloucester.com website, the robot is designed to act as a “companion” and help people manage their health by doing such things as remind them to take their medication.

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  • Time to send us your proposals for the 14th UK Dementia Congress

    Time to send us your proposals for the 14th UK Dementia Congress

    07.02.19 The call for presentations has gone out for the 14th UK Dementia Congress, organised by the Journal of Dementia Care and taking place this year at Doncaster Racecourse (5-7 November) – keep an eye on the website for developments. The deadline for proposals for presentations and posters is midnight on 28 April and they can cover any aspect of support, care and treatment for people with dementia and their families. Guide for submitting a proposal is HERE

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  • NHS could be 'overwhelmed' if genetic tests for dementia are sold

    NHS could be 'overwhelmed' if genetic tests for dementia are sold

    06.02.19 Plans for the NHS to sell genetic tests to healthy people, predicting their chances of getting conditions like dementia and cancer, could result in massive demand from the “worried well” critics have said. The plans, revealed by the Times newspaper, would allow healthy people to have their genetic code sequenced as part of a scheme from health ministers to encourage more people to volunteer their genetic data for research. MPs on the health select committee warned health secretary Matt Hancock that GPs could be overwhelmed by queries from the worried well and that it would create a two-tier NHS in which those who could afford the test would have time to take preventive action denied to others.

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  • Hypothermia guidance

    Hypothermia guidance

    05.02.19 Guidance on hypothermia has come out from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) as part of its series of “learning from safety incidents” resources. Among those the CQC says are at risk of hypothermia are older people in care homes and receiving care at home, people with reduced mental capacity or mobility, and people who cannot communicate that they are exposed to cold. Among the incidents cited in the report as a source of learning is one in which a resident was found to be suffering from severe hypothermia and pneumonia after the care home’s boilers failed. The care home provider’s registration was cancelled. www.cqc.org.uk/guidance-providers/learning-safety-incidents/issue-8-hypothermia

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  • 'No deal' announcement on free movement worries care sector

    'No deal' announcement on free movement worries care sector

    04.02.19 Health and social care organisations have expressed concern at government plans to halt free movement of workers in the event of “no deal” with the European Union. While EU citizens already resident here on 29 March will be able to stay, as long as they apply to a special settlement scheme, those arriving after that date will be subject to UK immigration rules, the government announced last week. Danny Mortimer, co-convenor of the Cavendish Coalition of health and social care organisations, said EU citizens coming here after 29 March would be able to apply to work in the UK for three years in the first instance. "Any process for securing the right to work must, however, be easy to navigate for all parties, and the government must dramatically improve upon its white paper on immigration,” Mortimer said.

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  • E-Newsletter  1 Feb 2019

    E-Newsletter 1 Feb 2019

    I am delighted to bring you my week’s round-up of dementia care news, stories and comment. This week's topics include hypothermia guidance, the opening of the call for presentations for UK Dementia Congress 2019 and care sector concerns about "no deal" announcement on free movement of workers. It is an editor's selection which I hope you will enjoy.

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  • BBC presenter says British Asians need help to talk about dementia

    BBC presenter says British Asians need help to talk about dementia

    01.2.19 BBC presenter Rajan Datar has talked about how, after learning that his own father had dementia, he discovered that a “combination of stigma, language barriers and cultural differences” was preventing people in the south Asian community from seeking help. “Sharing [my father’s diagnosis of mixed dementia] openly is not the easiest thing to do, and I certainly wouldn’t have done it without his full blessing and cooperation,” Datar says. “But the fact is both his elder sisters died in their 80s with advanced dementia, and British Asians are less likely to be diagnosed – and therefore be given the support they need – when they have the condition.” The article on the BBC website suggests that the NHS must do more to surmount language barriers and cultural differences, for example with literature, assessments and a helpline in languages such as Punjabi. For the article, click HERE.

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  • Head of Dementia Research Institute laments cost of Brexit

    Head of Dementia Research Institute laments cost of Brexit

    31.01.19 Bart De Strooper, head of the UK Dementia Research Institute (DRI), has told the Observer that he would not have gone for the job had he known about the full implications of Brexit. De Strooper has said Brexit will make it more difficult to achieve the goals of the DRI, set up in 2016 at a cost of £250 million to make the UK a world leader in dementia research. The DRI already faces serious funding and recruitment problems, says De Strooper, who is Belgian. “I am not going to be able to convince bright young scientists to come over, along with their families, so that they can work with me and help beat the scourge of dementia. They know they will not be made welcome. Some are already being turned back, in fact.” But De Strooper insisted he would continue in his role as DRI director. For the full story, click HERE.

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