Carer image

Alzheimer’s Society has revealed that people with dementia have had to spend almost £15 billion of their own money on social care since Government reforms were first promised in 2017.

The charity’s analysis is also supported by a number of other reports, including the recent Healthwatch England dementia care review.

Since the promise of the Government’s long-awaited Green Paper on social care reform in March 2017, Alzheimer’s Society says the dementia care crisis has reached “breaking point”.

Advertisement | Continue story below

According to the charity’s analysis, people affected by dementia have spent £14.47 billion of their own money on social care since March 2017, compared to £9.3 billion by the UK Government.

In the same time period, people with dementia have spent more than one million unnecessary days in hospital, costing the NHS in excess of £340 million.

People with dementia also spend more on their care, costing an average 15 percent more than standard social care, adds Alzheimer’s Society. Typically, people with dementia spend £100,000 on their care, but for people with cancer or heart disease, their care is covered by the NHS.

Alzheimer’s Society states that the injustice people with dementia face to get quality care, at a fair price, on top of dealing with the damaging effects of dementia, must end.

Jeremy Hughes, CEO of Alzheimer’s Society, said: “This shocking sum of money spent by people with dementia over the last two years trying to get access to the care and support they desperately need is utterly unacceptable.

“And the amount and quality of care they’re getting for it – those who can afford it – just isn’t good enough. The results are people with dementia and their families falling victim to this dreadfully broken system.

“The evidence of the gross inequity continues to pile up, and yet still the Government does nothing.

“We need an immediate cash injection through a dedicated Dementia Fund, while the Government works out a long term solution to finally end this crisis in care. With diagnosis rates of dementia at an all-time high, action can’t come soon enough.”

In response to the dementia care crisis, Alzheimer’s Society is calling for urgent investment in a dedicated £2.4 billion Dementia Fund. The Dementia Fund would sit within the NHS and the charity recommends that the money for the fund should come from the so far £3.5 billion unallocated funding for community care attached to the NHS Long-Term Plan.

It would cover the additional social care costs people with dementia are asked to pay because of the complexity of their health condition.

AT TODAY UPDATES
Over 7,000 healthcare professionals stay informed about the latest assistive technology with AT Today. Do you?
We respect your privacy