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Hospitals 'failing dementia patients'

Hospitals 'failing dementia patients'
16th December 2010

Hospitals are failing to adequately train their staff in dementia care, according to a report.

The Royal College of Psychiatrists found that 95 per cent of hospitals do not have compulsory dementia training for all staff.

It was also found that 80 per cent of hospitals had no system in place to ensure ward staff were aware if a patient suffered from the condition.

Jeremy Hughes, chief executive of Alzheimer's Society said that this an unacceptable statistic given that one in four hospital beds are occupied by a patient with dementia.

Mr Hughes also pointed out that people with dementia can become agitated and confused in a strange environment, which is challenging to nurses, but only 35 per cent of hospitals had a system in place to deal with this.

"We know hospital staff want to do a good job but without training and support they are being prevented from providing good quality dementia care," he said.

Meanwhile, researchers from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden have used PET scans to track Alzheimer's development from beginning to end in a 56-year-old patient.

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