- RCGP response to Alzheimer's Society report
RCGP response to Alzheimer's Society report
Publication date: 15 January 2013
RCGP Chair, Professor Clare Gerada responds to a report by the Alzheimer's Society.
Professor Clare Gerada, Chair of the Royal College of GPs said
“The RCGP is committed to improving the care GPs provide to patients with dementia but diagnosing patients as having dementia is difficult, especially in the early stages when patients are likely to visit their GP with concerns.
"In an ideal world every patient would receive an equal level of and equal access to healthcare regardless of their individual circumstances or where they live. However, GPs currently face a number of obstacles that inhibit them from making this a reality for patients with dementia.
“GPs need to have access to a wide range of services and resources such as memory clinics so that they can properly support people beyond diagnosis and help them live healthy, independent and productive lives for as long as possible. Management works best with teams working together – supported by experts and generalists from the voluntary, hospital and community sectors. These services should be available to everyone who needs them and with an ageing population it is even more important that local Council or Government cuts do not adversely affect them.
"The College has named Dementia as one of our clinical priorities and appointed two 'clinical champions' to lead a programme in association with the Alzheimer's Society. We are developing a 'roadmap' for dementia as a navigational aid for what to do at different points during the course of a patient’s journey through dementia, and to assist primary care to assist with management of dementia for patients, family and carers.
"We also believe that our plans for enhancing and extending GP training will improve the detection and management of chronic conditions, like dementia. Addressing key training needs will be crucial to ensuring that future GPs will develop the skills required to fulfil their role in a complex and changing NHS environment.
“We welcome Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt’s personal interest in this issue and hope that this is channelled into sustaining and increasing services, such as memory clinics. We hope that his concern is backed up with support for GPs to deliver the resources necessary to improve timely diagnosis"
RCGP Press office - 020 3188 7574/7575/7576
Out of hours: 0203 188 7659
Notes to editor
The Royal College of General Practitioners is a network of more than 46,000 family doctors working to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on education, training, research and clinical standards.