Social services failing to care for older people with dementia

Social services departments are struggling to care for older
people with dementia, according to figures released by MP Paul
Burstow, the Liberal Democrat health spokesperson.

Seven out of 10 social services departments admit they cannot
cope with the demand for beds, according to the report released
during National Alzheimer’s Week, ‘Out of Sight: The
Forgotten Elderly’.

The Liberal Democrats commissioned the research in the wake of
reports last autumn that demonstrated a steep rise in the closure
of care homes and the increasing pressure on social services

Sixty two per cent of social services departments report
shortfalls in provision for those older people with challenging
behaviour, and 58 per cent reported shortfalls in provision of
specialised dementia care.

The research also revealed that 62 per cent of councils reported
overspends in community care budgets.

Burstow said: “The government has failed to understand the
impact of a collapse in confidence within the care home sector over
the last two years. The investment needed to develop specialist
services is simply not there and the elderly and their families are
picking up the cost.

“Families should not be expected to struggle on with intimate
caring duties when specialist care is required. Nor should
vulnerable elderly people be placed in a home that is not properly
funded or staffed to meet their needs,” he added.




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