Dementia, a Clinical Priority from 2012 – 2015 was led by two Clinical Champions Dr Jill Rasmussen and Prof Louise Robinson. With recognition of the increased importance of dementia because of its health and socio-economic impact, the programme of work aimed to improve the knowledge about, recognition and management of and commissioning for dementia.
The resources produced during the Clinical Priority period have been brought together into a Dementia Toolbox. The resources are designed to support GPs and fellow primary healthcare professionals to improve the quality of life and care of people who are concerned about their memory, people with dementia, their family and carers.
Impact of the Dementia Clinical Priority [PDF]
RCGP Policy Position Statement on the role of general practice in the identification and treatment of people with dementia February 2013 [PDF]
The Dementia Roadmap
The Dementia Roadmap (http://dementiaroadmap.info) is a web-based platform that brings together the knowledgebase for dementia in one place, helping primary care staff to more effectively support people with dementia, their families and carers.
The platform supports the creation of local Dementia Roadmaps pre-populated with a knowledgebase containing nationally relevant resources and groups, organised around a coherent structure reflecting the key stages of the dementia care pathway. The knowledgebase is centrally maintained and made available to all localities alongside their locally maintained information.
The demand for the development of local Dementia Roadmaps is high. Twenty local Dementia Roadmaps have been purchased during the first phase of the national rollout project between October 2014 and March 2015. Since launching the Dementia Roadmaps in May 2014 there have been 20,630 sessions from 15,995 users viewing 73,962 pages.
In January 2015 an online learning environment was launched, containing step-by-step guides and tutorials to help local editors manage the content on their roadmaps. This important learning resource supports local capacity for managing information about services and support groups for people with dementia, their carers and families.
There has been support for and publicity about the value of having a Dementia Roadmap from Professor Alistair Burns, National Clinical Director Dementia NHS England, Department of Health and in the Prime Minister’s challenge on dementia 2020.
Please see the links below to learn more about the Dementia Roadmap and how to develop one for your locality.
Resources for GPs and Health Professionals
Wales Mental Health in Primary Care (WaMH in PC), a special interest working group of RCGP Wales, has developed, with funding from Welsh Government, a FREE interactive ‘Managing Dementia in Primary Care Training Resource, aimed at supporting Primary Care Teams to deliver the best quality care to patients with dementia. The training is designed to be facilitated by a member of staff, lasts for two hours, is not Welsh specific and is aimed at the whole practice team. All the training materials can easily be accessed via the WaMH in PC website. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org
This toolkit was developed to give clinicians guidance about what tests are available and how they may be used in clinical practice. This is particularly timely as the commonly used Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE), which is copyrighted, now incurs a cost for each use, so there is a need to identify alternatives.
This booklet acts as an educational tool aimed at GPs and practice nurses who have no experience of diagnosing and treating dementia.
This framework is designed to help GPs understand and develop the extended knowledge and skills they require to provide services beyond the scope of their existing generalist roles in dementia.
Dementia Sound Doctor series
The Sound Doctor has created a series of films on living with dementia in conjunction with Newcastle University Institute for Ageing with support from North East and North Cumbria Academic Health Science Network. The films will help patients, their families and health professionals better understand the common symptoms of dementia and give practical advice on how to cope and help people get the most out of life.
Available from the Sound Doctor website.
- Timely diagnosis is important for the majority for people to empower them to make their own decisions, plan the best possible care, and optimise clinical management.
- Specific drug treatments are recommended for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia associated with Parkinson’s disease.
- Behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia can in many cases be prevented without resorting to antipsychotic drugs.
- Antipsychotics can have a small but important place in the short term management of severe behavioural and psychological symptoms.
- GPs need to identify and manage the needs of carers as well as those of patients.
This resource supports commissioners, clinicians and managers to commission high-quality evidence-based care for people with dementia and their carers. The RCGP were represented on the Topic Advisory Group by the Clinical Champions.
This guideline has been developed to help all those in primary care, the community, and those who care for people with dementia and will cover the assessment of pain in dementia, including common behaviour presentations, available assessment tools and pain scales, and the valuable input that the patient, their family and/or carer can have in this process.
The guideline was developed by a multidisciplinary expert panel: Rasmussen J et al with the support of an unrestricted grant from Napp Pharmaceuticals Ltd. This working party guideline was published by MGP Ltd, the publishers of Guidelines and the working party was convened by them.
A presentation given as part of a one day course for GPs on Managing Mental Health.
Postgraduate certificate: Practitioner with specialist interest in dementia
This is a 1 year part time course for GPs and nurse practitioners which combine face to face; e-learning and clinical training to equip healthcare professionals with the knowledge and skills to undertake specialist dementia care in primary care. Further information can be found at www.bradford.ac.uk/health/dementia
This document launches the next phase of the Prime Minister's challenge on dementia.
The Dementia Core Skills & Knowledge Framework was commissioned and funded by the Department of Health and developed in collaboration by Skills for Health and Health Education England (HEE). The Framework supports workforce development, specific to implementation of the National Dementia Strategy, the Prime Ministerial Challenge and HEE Mandate.
All Party Parliamentary Group Reports
'This report contains a number of recommendations, which we hope health and social care policy-makers will carefully consider. The government, with support from all political parties, should be commended for maintaining its relentless focus on dementia in this parliament. However, there is no room for complacency. My fellow Officers and I hope that this short report will act as a positive contribution to the debate over what should follow the NDSE and the Prime Minister’s challenge on dementia. There is still much more to do to improve the lives of people with dementia. We would like to see a redoubling of efforts by decision-makers in 2015 and beyond.' - Baroness Sally Greengross OBE, Chair, APPG on Dementia.
- Dementia care in primary care: A priority for 21st century GPs, Louise Robinson and Julia Cook, Clinical News May 2014
- Living well with dementia: how can GPs help?, Louise Robinson, Clinical News May 2014
- The challenges of diagnosing Alzheimer disease, Anna Dowrick, Alzheimer's Society, Clinical News May 2014
- Would doctors routinely asking older patients about their memory improve dementia outcomes? Yes. Rasmussen J, BMJ 2013;346:f1780 (Published 26 March 2013)
- The Appropriate Use of Drugs for Dementia Patients Dr Jill Rasmussen, Moat House Surgery, Worsted Green, Merstham, Surrey, RH1 3PN Primary Care Neurology 2013
- Improving diagnosis and management of dementia in primary care, Dr Jill Rasmussen Progress in Neurology and Psychiatry November/December 2013
- Dementia in primary care mental health Carlos Augusto de Mendoça Lima (Portugal) José Miguel Caldas de Almeida (Portugal) Steve Iiffe (UK) Jill Rasmussen (UK) Chapter 30 in Companion to Primary Care Mental Health, pg571-609, Published WONCA Reference No: A201107050002 ISBN: 978-981-08-9429-0