Supporting carers of people with dementia has broader benefits

20 October 2018

Supporting carers of people with dementia has broader benefits

Supporting carers of people living with dementia has broader benefits beyond preventing or delaying entry into residential aged care, Dementia Australia stated in response to a Productivity Commission review released this week.

Dementia Australia CEO, Maree McCabe said family carers play a vital role in supporting people living with dementia to remain in their home for as long as possible. There are many factors as to why someone living with dementia enters residential care, and community based support for family carers can certainly improve the quality of life for both the person living with dementia and their carer.

“Family carers must be supported to ensure they and their loved ones can remain engaged with their families and friends and, continue to enjoy the activities and lifestyle of their choice.

“The role carers play is key to increasing family, social and community inclusion for the person living with dementia which in turn adds to improving the quality of life of the person in their care,” Ms McCabe said.

The Productivity Commission’s review Interventions to support carers of people with dementia considered what works to support carers of older people with dementia to prevent or delay entry into residential aged care.

The Review findings show that counselling support and case management services were identified as being effective interventions to support carers and can delay entry into residential care of a person living with dementia and other interventions with carers are less effective. 

“Importantly the Review identified gaps in research which highlights that there is a need for high quality research evaluating the effectiveness of strategies to support carers of people with dementia,” Ms McCabe said.

“There are an estimated 436,000 Australians now living with dementia and without a medical breakthrough, this number is expected to rise to 1.1 million by 2058.

“We know that 70 per cent of people living with dementia live in the community.

“With an estimated 1.5 million people involved in the care of someone living with dementia in Australia, supporting the needs of carers is a high priority to maintain good quality of life for everyone impacted by dementia.

“During National Carers Week, we are recognising the important work of carers and why support is so crucial to reducing the stress and strain that is often inherent in the caring role.”

For more information about Dementia Australia’s various programs designed to assist carers of those living with dementia, contact the National Dementia Helpline on 1800 100 500.

To get involved with National Carers Week, or more information please visit www.carersweek.com.au

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Dementia Australia is the national peak body and charity for people, of all ages, living with all forms of dementia, their families and carers. It provides advocacy, support services, education and information. An estimated 436,000 people have dementia in Australia. This number is projected to reach more than 1.1 million by 2056. Dementia Australia is the new voice of Alzheimer’s Australia. Dementia Australia’s services are supported by the Australian Government.

National Dementia Helpline 1800 100 500  

Interpreter service available 

(The National Dementia Helpline is an Australian Government Initiative)

Dementia is a National Health Priority Area

www.dementia.org.au

Media contacts: John Noble 0407 019 430 john.noble@dementia.org.au Christine Bolt 0400 004 553 christine.bolt@dementia.org.au

When talking or writing about dementia please refer to Dementia Language Guidelines.