Basket | Login


United Kingdom (Scotland)

National Dementia Strategies

3 June 2013: Scotland launches new National Dementia Strategy

Mr Alex Neil, Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing, launched Scotland’s new National Dementia Strategy at Alzheimer Scotland’s Dementia Connections Conference on 3 June.

A key aim of the new three-year strategy will be to improve standards of hospital care for people with dementia. It will see all general hospitals implement an action plan to prevent people with dementia going into hospital unnecessarily, ensure they get better care when in hospital and are helped to get home as quickly as possible once they are ready to leave.

The strategy will also build upon the achievements of the first strategy, including 300+ Dementia Champions, Alzheimer Scotland Dementia Nurses in health boards across Scotland, the Promoting Excellence knowledge and skills framework for all health and social care staff and the Standards of Care for Dementia in Scotland.

Secretary Neil said: “I am delighted to launch our second three year National Dementia Strategy, which will further improve diagnosis rates, transform the quality of post-diagnostic support and take forward a national action plan on improving care for people with dementia in hospitals.

“We’ve already seen huge progress since we made dementia a national priority in 2007. Currently 64% of Scots are getting a diagnosis, significantly better than other parts of the UK. Everyone diagnosed from 1 April this year is entitled to a named support worker to help them and their families understand the illness, manage its symptoms and plan for future care, described as a 'world leading' commitment by Alzheimer Scotland."

National Dementia Strategy launched on 1 June 2010

The Scottish government published its first-ever national dementia strategy on 1 June 2010 and this ran for three years.

On 6 June 2011, the report 'One Year On' was published by the dementia strategy's Implementation and Monitoring Group (see download below). To mark the first anniversary of the strategy, Nicola Sturgeon (Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Health, Wellbeing and Cities Strategy) presented new reports on care standards for dementia and a framework for staff working with people with dementia. A transcription of her speech and both reports are available below.

The government had announced that dementia would be a national priority as early as 1997. However, development of a comprehensive dementia strategy only began in 2009. This was sparked by  the publication of a report by the Mental Welfare and Care Commission and a wide-ranging consultation that covered the following aspects of dementia:

  • Treatment and Managing Behaviour
  • Assessment, Diagnosis and Patient Pathways
  • Improving the general service response to dementia
  • Rights, Dignity and Personalisation
  • Health Improvement, Public Attitudes and Stigma

Scotland's Third National Dementia Strategy (2017 - 2020) builds on work carried out since dementia was made a priority by the Scottish Government 10 years ago. Significant progress has been made in this time, however for many people, the gap between policy and real life experience remains too wide.

The new commitments are progressive and ambitious, and will help deliver high quality, person centred support for people with dementia, their families and carers from the point of diagnosis to the end of life. It will require local areas throughout Scotland to maintain and increase their investment in dementia care, making dementia a priority locally.

The strategy contains 21 commitments, including ensuring timely diagnosis, continuing to ensure high-quality post post-diagnostic support (based on our 5 Pillars Model of Post-Diagnostic Support), care co-ordination in the community (based on our 8 Pillars Model of Community Support) and a commitment to test new ways of supporting people with advanced dementia and at the end of life including testing our Advanced Dementia Practice Model.

The strategy continues the commitment tothe Promoting ExcellenceFramework and supports the new Allied Health Professionals framework,Connecting People, Connecting Support. Additionally it commits tothe ongoing work to improve Acute Hospitals, Specialist Dementia Units and Care Homes.

The commitment to Post Diagnostic Support goes beyond the initial guarantee of a minimum of one year of Post Diagnostic Support from a named Link Worker for individuals diagnosed early in their illness. The strategy commits to continuing this support, using the5 PillarModel approach beyond 12 months if necessary, until formal health or social care supports are needed.

The strategy ensures that individuals diagnosed later and whose needs would more appropriately be delivered using the8 PillarModel receive Post Diagnostic Support from a Dementia Practice Coordinator and through until advanced illness.

These commitments enhance a progressive dementia policy which was already world-leading.

On page 14 of the strategy, the video below is referred to; the video explains why Post-Diagnostic Support is so important for people with dementia, their families and carers.



Last Updated: Friday 05 July 2013