What might the future look like for Dementia in 2020? | Deloitte UK has been saved
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Last weekend the Prime Minister (PM) launched his second ‘challenge on dementia’ a five year vision aimed at positioning England as the best country in the world for dementia care and research by 2020[i]. The PM’s 2020 challenge is set against a backdrop of a growing body of evidence on the profound impact dementia is having on society (the Centre’s blog published late last year detailed the latest evidence on the scale and extent of the dementia challenge). While it celebrates the significant progress made to date it also acknowledges that much more still needs to be done.
The ‘Prime Minister’s challenge on dementia 2020’ continues the Government’s focus on improving dementia care in England. A focus that began in February 2009 with the Department of Health’s five year strategy: Living well with dementia: a national dementia strategy for England, and received a boost in 2012 when the Prime Minister launched his first three year challenge on Dementia.[ii] This latest step details why, how, when, and where the Government’s focus will be over the next five years.
One of the main areas of progress to date is the investment of over £6 billion (both spent and pledged investment from charities, the public and private sectors). Some of the areas where measurable progress has been made include:
While the above progress is impressive, the PMs 2020 challenge recognises rightly that there is still much more to be done; with an urgent need to reduce the wide variations in quality of care experienced across the country, including many people receiving care that’s totally unfit for purpose.
Consequently, while the 18 ‘key aspirations’ in the Prime Minister’s 2020 Challenge build on progress to date, it focusses specifically on the following areas:
The Prime Minister’s renewed focus on dementia is an important continuation of the priority that has been given to tackling this devastating disease. While the 18 ‘key aspirations’ represent an important opportunity to improve the lives of an estimated 850,000 people living with dementia and 670,000 carers in the UK, they also have significant implications for the UK economy. For example, if we fast forward to 2020 and have successfully developed a treatment that can delay dementia onset by five years, we could expect accumulated savings of around £100 billion in first 15 years of use.[iv] Whatever the outcome of this year’s general election, let’s hope the next government can make the 2020 vision for dementia a reality.
[i] The Prime Ministers Challenge on Dementia 2020. February 2015. See also: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/prime-ministers-challenge-on-dementia-2020
[ii] Prime Minister’s Challenge on Dementia – Delivering major improvements in dementia care and research by 2015, Department of Health, March 2012
[iii] The Prime Ministers Challenge on Dementia 2020. February 2015. See also: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/prime-ministers-challenge-on-dementia-2020
[iv] Martin Knapp, Adelina Comas-Herrera, Raphael Wittenberg, Bo Hu, Derek King, Amritpal Rehill, Bayo Adelaja (2014) Scenarios of Dementia Care: What are the Impacts ion Cost and Quality of Life? London: PSSRU, LSE
Karen is the Research Director of the Centre for Health Solutions. She supports the Healthcare and Life Sciences practice by driving independent and objective business research and analysis into key industry challenges and associated solutions; generating evidence based insights and points of view on issues from pharmaceuticals and technology innovation to healthcare management and reform. Karen also produces a weekly blog on topical issues facing the healthcare and life science industries.