This report published by Ipsos MORI presents the findings of a survey into the provision of dementia adviser services throughout England.
39% of those responsible for commissioning dementia adviser services within Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCG) and Local Authorities (LA) completed an online survey in October/November 2015. This research was designed to be indicative rather than representative of all commissioners. The survey was voluntary and participants used an open link to complete.
Dementia advisers provide a single identifiable point of contact for people with dementia and their carers following a diagnosis. They have knowledge of and direct access to the whole range of available local services, providing advice, information about where to get care and enabling contact with other services. Having a single point of contact was highlighted as being an essential element of effective post-diagnostic care in the Prime Minister’s challenge on dementia 2020.
Dementia adviser services were found in most of the areas surveyed, with 81 out of 89 (91%) commissioners stating that there is a dementia adviser service or similar in their area. These dementia adviser services tend to be well established, with many of them having existed for two years or more.
One in ten (10%) commissioners say that dementia advisers have provided their services for between 201 and 500 people in the past year and 7% for each of the following; over 2,000 people, between 501 and 1,000 people and between 101 and 200 people. In the majority of cases, commissioners report that dementia advisers communicate face-to-face or over the telephone with people with dementia and their carers.
Around a third (31%) of commissioners say that the annual cost of a dementia adviser is £25,000 – £34,999, and a fifth (19%) say that the cost is £15,000 – £24,999. The cost of commissioning each dementia adviser also seems to be greater within London than in other regions.
In many cases, there is one organisation that is the lead commissioner for the entire dementia adviser service (63%). In other areas, there are multiple lead commissioners responsible for different parts of the dementia adviser service (37%).
In three-quarters of cases the CCG/LA commissions the Alzheimer’s Society to deliver dementia adviser services. If a dementia adviser service is not delivered by the Alzheimer’s Society it is provided by other organisations such as a mental health trust or an Local Authority.
Commissioners use a range of online resources to inform the commissioning of dementia services including research and guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, Department of Health, the Social Care Institute for Excellence and the Alzheimer’s Society.