In 2015, the Challenge on Dementia 2020 was launched, which sets out the vision for dementia care, support, awareness and research to be transformed by 2020. I fully support the ambition to ensure England offers the world’s best dementia care.
Progress in the care, support and treatment of people with dementia has been made, with more people receiving a diagnosis of dementia than ever before. Over 660,000 NHS staff have received dementia training with further training opportunities rolled out to all NHS staff by the end of 2018. Over 100,00 social care workers have received some form of dementia awareness training. Since 2015, new care staff have been trained to receive the Care Certificate, which equips them with the skills to provide safe and compassionate care, including for those with dementia. It is important to increase public awareness and understanding of dementia among the wider public and I am encouraged that there are almost 2.5 million Dementia Friends in the UK.
Research is crucial to understanding and tackling dementia, which is why the Government has doubled research spending on dementia and remains committed to maintaining the current expenditure on dementia research of at least £60 million a year through to 2020. Over £83 million was spent on dementia research by the Government in 2016/17.
The Government is committed to publishing a Green Paper this year, which will outline a new social care policy, which is financially sustainable, accessible, and properly integrated with the NHS.