7. Recognise

Recognise; assess; refer

Questions to consider

  • how can we improve recognition of memory problems?
  • how can we improve diagnosis of dementia?
  • how can we improve the management of our patients’ care?

DRIVER: Proactive, responsive primary care services

ActionsResourcesExamples
Introduce targeted screening for key groups, e.g.

  • frail elderly people, including older carers
  • people with long term conditions
  • patients in care homes
  • patients with cardiovascular disease
  • patients with Huntingdon’s Disease or Parkinson’s disease
  • older adults with depression
  • adults with learning disabilities
  • patients presenting with memory problems, or mild cognitive impairment

Initiate targeted screening via,

  • annual checks for over-65s
  • over-75 health checks
  • ‘flu clinics
  • reviews of clinic registers
Review annually patients who have presented with Mild Cognitive Impairment (Eu057).

Maintain a register of people with suspected dementia or mild cognitive impairment. Review regularly within primary care, or via referral for a specialist memory assessment.

Run a real time audit with Primary Health Care Team to check, and follow up on cases involving or patients presenting with

  • falls
  • possible carer strain
  • older patients failing to attend appointments
  • older patients failing to collect, or take dispensed medications
  • patients in community hospitals
  • patients in care homes presenting with confusion, depression, problems thinking, reasoning, struggling to follow up conversations, forgetfulness, other changes in mood and cognition
  • problems with self care
    Consider the needs of patients from Black and minority ethnic groups, where cultural differences may affect the timeliness of presentation.