Major changes need to be made in the way dementia services are planned and commissioned in Wales. That's according to a report from the Care and Social Service Inspectorate Wales. It found 'significant gaps' in what are called early intervention services. Carole Green reports.
Alzheimer's Society in Wales says there needs to be a 'step change' in the way dementia services are commissioned in Wales. Sue Phelps, the charity's director, says preventative services can be a "lifeline" for people with dementia and their carers.
– Sue Phelps, director Alzheimer's Society in Wales
This review is a wake-up call. It has long been recognised that health and social care must be better integrated, but recognition is one thing and delivering much needed change is another.
We work closely with local authorities and health boards and understand the pressures they are under financially, but we need to make sure money spent on services for people with dementia is used effectively. We must ensure there is enough funding in the system to allow us to protect the most vulnerable.
The CSSIW review into dementia care took place between July 2013 and January this year. As part of the review, the inspectorate visited five local authorities to look at how well services for people with dementia and their carers was being commissioned.
The report found:
- significant gaps in the planning and provision of prevention and early intervention services
- the commissioning of preventative services from the third sector is ad hoc
- a need for greater focus on the quality of care and people's quality of life when monitoring service contracts.
By 2021, the number of people with dementia across Wales is projected to increase by 31% and by as much as 44% in some rural areas.
Local authorities and health boards must increase the pace at which they are transforming services to deliver integrated models of care that will effectively support people with dementia and their carers.
– Imelda Richardson, CSSIW Chief Inspector
The report identifies that the current arrangements for commissioning services are not sustainable in the face of projected future demands and financial pressures.
Major changes need to be made in the way dementia services are planned and commissioned in Wales, according to a report from the Care and Social Service Inspectorate Wales (CSSIW).
The report found that there are 'significant gaps' in the planning and provision of early intervention services and there is a need for 'greater focus' on the quality of care provided by local authorities and health boards.