Dementia Action Week 2022: 16th – 22nd May
The theme of this year’s campaign is Diagnosis.
According to the Alzheimer’s Society, there are currently around 900,000 people living with dementia in the UK.
It is of concern that for the first time ever, there has been a sustained drop in the number of people being diagnosed with dementia. A recent study of theirs has found that the key barriers to getting a diagnosis are denial and long referral times to see specialists.
Of course, the thought of getting or having dementia is scary and daunting.
But 91% of people affected by dementia believe it is better to know.
The Alzheimer’s Society believe getting a diagnosis is so important. According to their website, it “can give you a better understanding of the condition and what to expect. Timely diagnosis can help you make important decisions about treatment, support and care.”
A diagnosis is an opportunity to take control of the things that matter
A dementia diagnosis does not mean that mental capacity is lost, but that time is of the essence. It therefore presents that person with an opportunity to take control of the things that matter to them. This may be making arrangements for comfortable daily living, finding ways of staying independent, planning for additional care and making financial and legal arrangements.
Setting up Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) documents is one way of taking control
Putting these documents in place means that a person decides, whilst they are still able to, who they would like to look after their financial affairs and who they would like to make decisions regarding their health and welfare matters when they were no longer able to do so.
If LPAs are not in place before mental capacity is lost, then an application may have to be made to the Court of Protection for a deputy to be appointed. The person who has lost capacity is not in control of who is appointed.
The process of applying to become someone’s deputy is expensive, time-consuming and impersonal. More importantly, deputies are normally only appointed to deal with decisions about property and finances, meaning that healthcare professionals will have the final say on care issues.
If you, or a loved one, has symptoms of dementia, please contact your GP for further help.
If you would like advice on how setting up Lasting Powers of Attorney can help give you control over your future, please do not hesitate to contact our Private Client team by calling 01625 614250 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org