Dementia help from alliance

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Businesses, charities and community groups have launched an alliance which aims to make Crawley ‘dementia friendly’.

Around 100 people attended K2 Leisure Centre to discuss how they would play their part in the aims of Crawley’s Dementia Friendly Alliance on Wednesday (November 27) .

The alliance is made up of local authorities, police, charities, businesses, GPs and community groups and was set up as part of Crawley CCG’s (Clinical Commissioning Group) Dementia Friendly Crawley initiative.

Attendees made pledges of how they would help improve awareness and support for people living with dementia during the event.

Malcolm Bray, chair of the Dementia Alliance and West Sussex County Council partnership and public health system development manager, said the event made him confident for the alliance’s future.

He said: “It was excellent. People were brimming with ideas. I’m confident people will take on the challenge.”

Dr Amit Bhargava, chief clinical officer for Crawley CCG, said the Dementia Friendly Crawley project increased dementia diagnosis from 37 per cent to 62 per cent through the creation of the Memory Assessment Service in September 2012.

He said early diagnosis was important to ensure the patient is as involved as possible in making decisions about the care they will receive.

He said: “We have high hopes for the scheme that has brought together everyone working for a shared goal of supporting people to, among other things, remain independent for longer and to reduce social isolation.”