Strong concerns about the treatment of dementia patients
The recent 'Low Expectations' report by the Alzheimer's Society says that we are so used to poor care of our elderly and demented that we're settling too often for lacklustre care homes. Sarah Kean-Price writes more:
23rd April 2013
A recent Alzheimer's report has been released highlighting concerns that fewer than half of those in care homes have a good quality of life. This has in part been driven by a new estimation of just how many people suffer with dementia or severe memory problems. It is now thought that as many as 80% in residential care can be classified this way; higher than the earlier estimates of 62%.
The charity was clear to point out that lots and lots of residents have a fantastic quality of life but could not refrain from highlighting the half that donï¿½t (around 161,000 across the country). They feel the problem is driven by falling cultural expectations about care homes; weï¿½re so used to shoddy and poorly-run services that weï¿½re willing to settle for mediocre instances in attempts to look after our elderly.
The Chief Executive, Jeremy Hughes, is appalled by what he sees as unequal attitudes: ï¿½Throughout our lives we demand the best for ourselves and our children. Why do we expect less for our parents? We need government and care homes to work together to lift up expectations so people know they have the right to demand the best.ï¿½
Indeed, upon the polling of 2000 UK adults, many agreed that they would be ï¿½scaredï¿½ to move into a care home at the end of their lives and two-thirds felt the care sector itself is not doing enough to tackle abuse and improve standards. Less than a third felt people with dementia are treated well in care homes, only 44% felt their relatives in care homes had good opportunities for activities.
If you want to read the Alzheimerï¿½s society report for yourself, you can access it here. Weï¿½d also be interested to hear your thoughts and experiences. If you have experience of a relative or friend with dementia in a care home or work with this group yourself, talk to us about it now on our Facebook page.