Date published: 15 May 2023
Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust is marking Dementia Action Week (May 15-21) by launching a new campaign across Liverpool designed to ease concerns about being diagnosed.
The aim of the campaign is to encourage more people to get a timely diagnosis with Liverpool’s ‘Dementia Diagnosis Rate’ - the number of people living with dementia who have a diagnosis of dementia compared to the number of people expected to have a diagnosis based on prevalence figures etc - currently falling below national targets.
Liverpool currently has a rate of 60.4 percent while the national target is 67 percent and to help increase awareness Mersey Care has produced ‘memory cards,’ which they plan to make available in public buildings and supermarkets around the city to urge people to contact their GP and get a diagnosis.
Dr Sarah Butchard, Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Psychology Lead for Older People’s Services at Mersey Care, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic certainly had an impact on the figures for Liverpool, with many older people reluctant to go out even when lockdown was lifted, but the rate was falling even before COVID-19.
“From what we’ve seen there are a number of factors contributing to the low figures, including people being reluctant to see a GP because of the stigma associated with Dementia. We hope to really increase awareness of diagnosis so more people can receive the specialist assessments they need as soon as possible.”
The memory cards (see below) will also be available at a number of events around Liverpool which will highlight services and encourage people to get a timely diagnosis.
Leigh Moss Older People’s Community Mental Health Team will have a stand at the following venues to provide support and signposting to the public regarding memory changes and dementia:
- Morrisons supermarket, Belle Vale - Monday, 15 May, 11am-2pm
- Dobbies, Speke - Tuesday, 16 May, 11am-2pm and Friday, 19 May, 11am-2pm
- The Life Rooms, Walton – Thursday, 18 May, 11am-2pm.
To help reduce anxieties about the assessment process, the service has also launched a new animation which explains, in simple terms, what to expect from a Neuropsychology Assessment and can be found on our website.