I would first of all like to assure you that, for both me and the Government, dementia is a priority. In 2015, the Government launched the Challenge on Dementia which set out an ambitious vision for dementia research, awareness and, importantly, care. As part of implementing this vision, over 660,000 NHS staff have received specific dementia care training equipping them with the knowledge and skills to provide a safe and inclusive environment for sufferers. Furthermore, according to the most recently available statistics in 2016/17, £83 million was spent on dementia research, illustrating the Government’s commitment to tackling dementia at all levels.
As your email noted, the costs of dementia care can place families in financial stress. The Government is committed to building an integrated social care and health care system designed to protect people at every stage of their lives. A major part of this commitment is the Government’s objective to publish a Green Paper this year, which will outline a new social care strategy which is financially sustainable for both public and private finances, as well as accessible to all those that might need it. As part of formulating this Green Paper, the Department of Health and Social Care is considering the proposers put forward by the Alzheimer’s Society regarding the establishment of a dementia fund which will offer a source of funding to help those most in need of financial support of the costs of care.
This is an area of concern for many of my constituents. As such, I would like to assure you that helping to fix social care is a real priority for me.