The UK Government have issued a new mandate to NHS England for 2016-2017 which aims to drive forward patient care improvements. The mandate makes a clear commitment to making measurable improvements especially in the quality of care and support for those people with dementia. It also aims to ensure that NHS England therefore, becomes one of the most efficient, safe and compassionate health care systems in the world, making the UK the most dementia friendly society by 2020.
There are seven objectives which set out the objectives of the mandate:
Objective 1: Through better commissioning, improve local and national health outcomes, particularly by addressing poor outcomes and inequalities
Objective 2: To help create the safest, highest quality health and care service
Objective 3: To balance the NHS budget and improve efficiency and productivity
Objective 4: To lead a step change in the NHS in preventing ill health and supporting people to live healthier lives
Objective 5: To maintain and improve performance against core standards
Objective 6: To improve out-of-hospital care
Objective 7: To support research, innovation and growth.
Objectives 2 and 6 are the key points which support the improvements to be made in dementia care and these relate directly to the Prime Minister’s Challenge on Dementia 2020 vision – for the UK to be the best place in the world to undertake research into dementia and other neurodegenerative diseases. The two outcomes aim to reduce the health gap between people with mental health problems, learning disabilities and autism and the population as a whole, and support them to live full, healthy and independent lives.
Care improvements and outcomes will be made through prevention, early intervention and improved access to integrated services to ensure physical and mental health needs are addressed. It is expected that NHS England will make measurable improvement in the quality of care and support for people with dementia and to increase public awareness of it over the next 4 years.