Map of dementia prevalence and diagnosis rates

A new partnership between Tesco, Alzheimer’s Society and Alzheimer Scotland has for the first time mapped the state of dementia and diagnosis levels in the UK and announced bold plans to help fight the disease.

The new ‘Mapping the Dementia Gap’ study reveals the number of people with dementia in each part of the UK and the percentage who receive a diagnosis. A formal diagnosis is vital for people with dementia and without it they can’t access drugs or advice on how to live more effectively with the condition. But many people delay seeking help because of low awareness of symptoms and treatments or fear they will lose their independence.

The research shows that diagnosis rates vary hugely around the UK:

  • Over a million people are predicted to have dementia in 2021.
  • Dorset has the lowest rates of diagnosis with only a quarter (26%) of people really knowing they have dementia. Two thirds (69%) of people living in Belfast with dementia have had a diagnosis.
  • In 2021, the study predicts that if the current rates of diagnosis don’t change, Milton Keynes will have the biggest gap between people predicted to be living with dementia (3,116) and those who will receive a diagnosis (only 38%). In contrast, Belfast is still predicted to have the smallest diagnosis gap.
  • Milton Keynes is the fastest growing area and can expect a 56% increase in people living with the condition. Barking & Dagenham is the slowest growing area with slightly fewer people predicted to be living with dementia in ten years time than now.