Hugo Swire promises more dementia help

RELATIVES and carers of people with dementia could soon be offered more support.

East Devon MP Hugo Swire said working on matters related to the condition was one of his main priorities in the coming year.

Speaking to the Exmouth Journal following a national dementia awareness week, Mr Swire said he was keen to see carers being given more support and wanted admiral nurses to be introduced into the county.

There are only between 65 and 70 of these type of specialist dementia nurses in the UK.

""In the short term I want to speak with the new director of social services at Devon County Council.

""I will be seeking an urgent meeting with the new head when he or she is appointed,"" he explained.

""I want to find out from health authorities about the reduction, as I see it, in the provision of beds.

""Respite for getting people into beds and places where they can stay for a few days so that their carers can have a bit of time to themselves is extremely important.

""Otherwise, what can happen is those carers are getting strained and potentially ill themselves.""

And, Mr Swire added: ""I am worried about those who I call the 'unsung heroes' of the story which are the carers themselves.

""One of the people who turned up to a dementia meeting I held in Exmouth a few weeks ago was a lady who had cared for her husband for 36 years. That is an extraordinary commitment.""

Mr Swire said he was concerned about the delivery of social services care if a planned unitary council for the whole of Devon was given the go-ahead.

""A large authority would be so big and remote that it could endanger the delivery of social services. This could have an effect on the delivery of any kind of dementia programmes.