A national review by Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales (CSSIW) has found that major changes need to be made to the way services for people with dementia are planned and commissioned.
The review which took place between July 2013 and January 2014, looked at how well local authorities were implementing the statutory guidance on commissioning published by the Welsh Government in 2010.
The report identifies that the current arrangements for commissioning services are not sustainable in the face of projected future demands and financial pressures. The report also notes that the move towards integrating health and social care services, while evident, is slow. On the whole, services to carers are varied and underdeveloped in some areas despite the existence of carers' strategies.
Alzheimer's Society comment:
'This review is a wake-up call. It has long been recognised that health and social care must be better integrated, but recognition is one thing and delivering much needed change is another. We work closely with local authorities and health boards and understand the pressures they are under financially, but we need to make sure money spent on services for people with dementia is used effectively. We must ensure there is enough funding in the system to allow us to protect the most vulnerable.
'We need to see a step change in the way services for people with dementia are commissioned in Wales, in order to ensure that the thousands of people living with dementia across the country have access to the care and support they need. Preventative services can be a lifeline for people with dementia and their carers. We therefore welcome the report's recommendation to include prevention and early intervention services within commissioning strategies for adult social care.'
Director of Alzheimer's Society in Wales
Care and support services for people with dementia