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Care & Social Support Priorities

Paris Declaration

8. People with dementia and their carers need both medical attention and care. Alzheimer associations have been set up in most European countries and provide people with dementia and their carers with much needed information and support. Yet, a recent survey[7] showed that at the time of diagnosis, only 41% of carers received information on Alzheimer associations and only 18% on available services.

Alzheimer Europe calls upon the medical profession to systematically inform newly diagnosed patients and their carers about the existence of Alzheimer associations and upon European medical organisations to inform their members about the support Alzheimer associations can provide to people with dementia and their carers.

Alzheimer Europe and its member organisations are committed to developing partnerships with the medical profession to provide a holistic approach to people with dementia taking into account both their care and treatment needs.

9. Alzheimer associations provide a range of services. A survey[8] conducted by Alzheimer Europe conducted amongst its members showed that in 24 of the 26 countries covered by the survey, Alzheimer associations provided support groups for people with dementia and their carers. Similarly, training programmes for carers were provided in 23 countries, helplines were operated in 23 countries, day care was provided in 14 countries and home care in 11 countries.

Alzheimer Europe calls upon national governments to recognise the important contributions provided by Alzheimer associations and to provide financial support to these organisations in order to help them to improve the services they give to people with dementia and their carers. Governments should envisage a range of support, such as core support, project funding, VAT exemptions or the tax deductibility of donations.

10. The care of people with dementia impacts the quality of life of carers significantly. In a recent survey[9], a significant proportion of carers declared that they spend more than 10 hours a day caring, ranging from 20% of carers of people with dementia in the early stages to 50% of carers of people with dementia in the later stages.

Alzheimer Europe calls upon national governments to recognise the significant burden of carers of people with dementia and to support the development of adequate respite services.

11. The availability of adequate care services for people with dementia poses a challenge in a number of European countries. When asked about the availability of necessary services[10], a majority of carers were unaware of existing services or felt that services were unavailable for them. Thus, only 44% of carers knew of home support services, 42% knew of day care, 34% of residential care, 33% of respite care and only 8% knew of appropriate hospice care. It is therefore not surprising that only 17% of respondents of the survey agreed with the statement that the level of care of the elderly was good in their country.

Alzheimer Europe calls upon national governments to develop and support a whole range of services for people with dementia which respond to their specific needs. This ranges from memory clinics and diagnostic centres, to adequate home care, day care, residential care and palliative care.

12. The care of people with dementia also constitutes a significant financial burden for carers of people with dementia. In a recent Alzheimer Europe survey [11], 88% of carers reported that they had to contribute financially to residential or nursing home care, 66% to respite care, 65% to home support and 55% to day care.

Alzheimer Europe calls upon national governments to adequately support people with dementia and their carers to allow them to make use of existing services.

Alzheimer Europe calls upon the European institutions to extend the Open Method of Coordination to the question of financing of long-term care and to exchange best practices in this field between the different European countries.

[7] Alzheimer Europe (2006) : The Dementia Carers' Survey (conducted in France, Germany, Poland, Scotland and Spain)

[8] Alzheimer Europe (2005) : The Alzheimer Movement in Europe, published in the 2004 Annual report of the organisation.

[9] Alzheimer Europe (2006) : The Dementia Carers' Survey

[10] Alzheimer Europe (2006) : The Dementia Carers' Survey

[11] Alzheimer Europe (2006) : The Dementia Carers' Survey

 

 
 

Last Updated: mercredi 01 juillet 2009

 

 
 

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