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Making a Difference in Dementia: Nursing Vision and Strategy

The Making a Difference in Dementia: Nursing Vision and Strategy, published in March 2013, set out our vision of how nurses could maximise their unique contribution to high-quality, compassionate care and support for people with dementia and their carers/families. In the past three years a great deal has been achieved, including the following:

• There has been a continued increase in dementia awareness, with more than 515,967 NHS staff at the end of March 2015 completing Tier 1 training to better support people with dementia. Tier 1 training continues to be rolled out, with a view to reaching all NHS staff by the end of 2018. The publication of the Dementia Core Skills Education and Training Framework in October 2015 will help us to achieve this goal, by assuring the quality and consistency of dementia training for all health and care staff.

• More than one million people have become Dementia Friends across England. The Alzheimer’s Society’s Dementia Friends programme is the biggest ever initiative aimed at changing people’s perceptions of dementia, transforming the way we all think, act and talk about dementia, to help improve awareness and understanding. Dementia Friends are helping to create communities in which people living with dementia feel more understood and included.

• The 2020 Dementia Challenge, published in February 2015, builds on the achievements of the previous 2012–15 Challenge. It identifies what needs to be done by the NHS, social care, voluntary, community sectors and society at large, to make sure that dementia care, support, awareness and research are transformed by 2020. The 2020 challenge focuses on risk reduction, health and care, continuing investment in research and expansion of dementia-friendly communities.

• The Implementation Plan published in March 2016, sets out priority actions to ensure that the commitments set out in the 2020 Dementia Challenge are delivered.

The spirit and values set out in Making a Difference in Dementia: Nursing Vision and Strategy remain as relevant today as three years ago. We want to build on these, while appreciating that emerging challenges require a fresh approach. This refreshed edition of Making a Difference in Dementia: Nursing Vision and Strategy reinforces the fundamental role nurses play in providing health promotion, care and support to people so they can live well with dementia. It aims to support all nurses, irrelevant of registration or specialty, to be responsive to the needs of people with dementia, continue to develop their skills and expertise, and improve the contribution they make in achieving best outcomes for people with dementia, their carers and families, and communities.