Dementia is a life limiting illness and people can live up to 12 years after diagnosis with increasing disability and need for support. Dementia is both complex and common, and it requires joint working across many sectors.
There is evidence that people with dementia have worse clinical outcomes than people with the same conditions without dementia. Timely diagnosis is the key to improving quality of life for people with dementia and their carers. Providing information, support and advice at the point of diagnosis enables people to remain independent and in their own homes for longer.
In Brighton and Hove in 2012, it is estimated that there are:
- 3,061 people aged 65 years or over with dementia – projected to increase to 3,858 by 2030
- around 60 younger people with dementia
- 2,300 carers of people with dementia.
It is thought that two thirds if people with dementia do not have a formal diagnosis of their condition. Early diagnosis can help people access support, information and potential treatments that can help them to live well with their condition.
Prevalence increases with age and one in three people over 65 will develop dementia. Although the Brighton & Hove population has a younger age profile than nationally, an increase of dementia prevalence of about 30% is expected by 2030. Carers of people with dementia are often old and frail themselves, with high levels of depression and physical illness and a diminished quality of life.
Nationally dementia is a priority, with Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and local authorities expected to implement the National Dementia Strategy (NDS) and the Prime Minister’s Challenge on Dementia.