DementiaRoadmap Wales

Promoting living well with dementia across Wales

Diagnostic process

Diagnosing dementia is often difficult, particularly in the early stages. The GP is usually the first person who is  consulted either by the person themselves or their family. The GP may then refer the person being diagnosed to a consultant for specialist assessment.

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  • Helping you to assess cognition: A practical toolkit for cliniciansMarch 12 2013This toolkit published by the Alzheimer's Society provides guidance to clinicians about what cognitive function tests are available and how they may be used in clinical practice.
  • Dementia READ codesDecember 5 2012This knowledge summary produced by Dementia Partnerships defines a standard set of READ codes for the diagnosis of dementia to be used by general practices and memory assessment services.
  • Models of dementia assessment and diagnosis: Indicative cost reviewSeptember 28 2015This report published by NHS England is designed to provide commissioners and service providers with detailed information about real alternative models of dementia assessment and diagnosis, with a cost breakdown.
  • Prevalence of dementia in population groups by protected characteristics: a systematic review of the literatureOctober 2 2015This literature review published by Public Health England examines evidence on how the prevalence of dementia varies with different characteristics, such as ethnicity, gender and religion.
  • Dementia stakeholder groups – action plansJune 29 2011These plans outline actions for improvement across four key priority areas: improving service provision, early diagnosis, access to information and training.
  • Services for younger people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementiasMarch 18 2006This briefing paper jointly published by the Royal College of Psychiatrists and the Alzheimer's Society provides guidance on the services for younger people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.
  • Addenbrookes cognitive examination-IIIMay 12 2014The Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination-III (ACE) is one of the most popular and commonly used cognitive tests used in dementia clinics and in the assessment of other neurological disorders.
  • Six Item Cognitive Impairment TestThe Six Item Cognitive Impairment Test (6CIT) is a brief cognitive function test which takes less than five minutes and is widely used in primary care settings.
  • Dementia and People with Intellectual Disabilities: Guidance on their Assessment, Diagnosis, Interventions and SupportApril 29 2015This guidance published by the British Psychological Society aims to promote effective and timely assessment, diagnosis, interventions and support to people with intellectual disabilities who develop dementia.
  • Building on the National Dementia Strategy: Change, progress and prioritiesJuly 27 2014This report published by the All Party Parliamentary Party Group on Dementia (APPG) calls for a new long term strategy for dementia to be a worthy successor to the National Dementia Strategy for Dementia in England and the Prime Minister's challenge on dementia.
  • Prime Minister’s challenge on dementia 2020February 21 2015The Prime Minister recently launched the government’s five year vision for the future of dementia care, support and research, which follows on from the existing Prime Minister’s Challenge on Dementia, launched in March 2012.
  • NICE Clinical guideline CG42 Dementia: supporting people with dementia and their carers in health and social careMarch 1 2011This guideline, published by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), makes specific recommendations on Alzheimer's disease, dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), fronto temporal dementia, vascular dementia and mixed dementias, as well as recommendations that apply to all types of dementia.
  • Five Year Forward ViewOctober 23 2014The Five Year Forward View published by NHS England sets out why the NHS needs to change and various models of care which could be provided in the future to deliver transformed care for patients.
  • General practitioner assessment of cognitionMay 12 2014The General practitioner assessment of cognition (GPCOG) is a reliable, valid and efficient tool to use to screen for dementia in primary care settings for people with carers.
  • Unlocking Diagnosis: The key to improving the lives of people with dementiaJuly 4 2012This report published by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Dementia (APPG) explores the barriers to dementia diagnosis in the UK. It makes recommendations to improve diagnosis rates and provide better post diagnosis support for people with dementia.
  • Montreal cognitive assessmentMay 12 2014The Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) is a rapid screening instrument for mild cognitive dysfunction suitable for use in primary care settings.
  • ACEmobileMay 13 2014ACEmobile is a mobile-friendly version of the Addenbrooke’s Cognitive Examination (ACE-III), a popular and commonly-used screening tools for dementia.
  • Prepared to care – Challenging the dementia skills gapJune 4 2009This report published by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Dementia (APPG) explores the scale of the challenge in training the caring professions in dementia, and how it may be met.
  • QS30: Supporting people to live well with dementiaApril 3 2013This quality standard, published by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), covers the care and support of people with dementia.
  • Dementia: A state of the nation report on dementia care and support in EnglandNovember 29 2013This report, published by the Department of Health, sets out what is known about dementia care, support and research. It highlights where improvements are being made and where improvements are needed.
  • A Misspent Opportunity? Inquiry into the funding of the National Dementia StrategyMarch 18 2010This report published by the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Dementia (APPG) examines initial progress made by Primary Care Trusts in England towards implementing the National Dementia Strategy for England.
  • Frontotemporal dementiaAugust 6 2013This article published in the British Medical Journal highlights some of the issues pertinent to Frontotemporal dementia, a clinically and pathologically heterogeneous group of non-Alzheimer dementias characterised collectively by relatively selective, progressive atrophy involving the frontal or temporal lobes, or both.
  • Care of people with dementia in primary careMarch 10 2012This factsheet published by the Royal College of General Practitioners provides GPs with guidance on the care of people with dementia in primary care.
  • Mini-CogMay 12 2014The Mini-Cog is a brief cognitive function test to screen for cognitive impairment in older adults in the primary care setting.
  • Improving the care of people with dementia in general hospitalsSeptember 21 2011Dignity in dementia; improving care in general hospital settings, a Royal College of Nursing led project, has launched tools to improve the care of people with dementia in general hospitals.
  • Dementia diagnosis resource packJanuary 17 2013This resource pack produced by Dementia Partnerships sets out key steps for Commissioners and General Practices to improve the diagnosis of dementia, and diagnosis pathways.
  • Dementia coding clean-up exerciseMay 13 2013This exercise devised by Dr Paul Russell aims to support GPs to identify problems in coding, which are contributing to low rates of dementia diagnosis on practice registers.
  • CMG48: Support for commissioning of dementia careApril 3 2013This guidance produced by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) summarises the key commissioning issues and the resource impact that will arise from implementing improvements in the quality of care for people with dementia, in line with the statements and measures that comprise the NICE quality standards for dementia.
  • Dementia commissioning for quality and innovationMarch 10 2012Dementia commissioning for quality and innovation (CQUIN) aims to help identify patients with dementia and other causes of cognitive impairment, alongside their other medical conditions and to prompt appropriate referral and follow up after they leave hospital.
  • Referral for a diagnosisApril 7 2014This leaflet produced by the Lewy Body Society highlights the importance of practitioners identifying the main symptoms of Lewy body dementia early to enable referral to a specialist at a memory clinic for correct diagnosis to be made.
  • Enhanced service for people with dementia in primary careSeptember 30 2013This short paper by Alistair Burns and Laurence Buckman summarises a multi-disciplinary group discussion on how the Enhanced Service might be optimally used to increase the numbers of people receiving a diagnosis and accessing post diagnostic support.
  • Putting dementia on the mapNovember 29 2013Putting dementia on the map published by the Department of Health draws on data and information about dementia health and care, dementia friendly communities and research.
  • Younger people with dementiaMay 19 2015This factsheet published by the Alzheimer's Society explores at the types of dementia that younger people under 65 years of age may have, some of the difficulties that they might experience and where support can be found.
  • Improving services and support for people with dementiaJuly 3 2007This report published by the National Audit Office presents findings from a study into the health and social care services available for people with dementia and their unpaid carers in England and whether they are providing effective and good quality support; and the scope for better use of resources against a background of rising demand.
  • Dementia Revealed: What primary care needs to knowOctober 30 2014This toolkit written by Dr Elizabeth Barrett is intended as an educational resource for use by GPs and practice nurses to expand their knowledge and confidence.
  • Dementia Prevalence CalculatorApril 30 2013The Dementia Prevalence Calculator presents an opportunity for all health communities to gain a better understanding of their local estimated prevalence of dementia in the community, and among people living in local care homes.
  • State of Care 2013/14October 16 2014This report published by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) reveals wide variation in the quality and safety of care for conditions such as dementia in England.
  • The Sound Doctor: Getting the best out of life with dementiaMarch 23 2015The Sound Doctor is a website full of films developed to help individuals, their relatives and carers to better understand the condition so that they can all take control and get the most out of life.
  • Abbreviated mental test scoreMay 12 2014The Abbreviated mental test score (AMTS) was developed in 1972 for assessing cognition. The test takes around five minutes and is widely used, particularly in UK general hospital settings.
  • Guidance on the use of neuro-imaging in the assessment of dementia in Primary CareSeptember 12 2013This guidance for Clinical Commissioning Groups and Health and Wellbeing Boards covers the role of neuro-imaging in the assessment and diagnosis of dementia in primary care.
  • Dementia assessment and referral 2014-15October 28 2014This data collection reports on the number and proportion of patients aged 75 and over admitted as an emergency for more than 72 hours who have been identified as potentially having dementia, who are appropriately assessed and, where appropriate, referred on to specialist services in England.
  • Guidance and standards for diagnosing dementiaMarch 10 2012This guidance sets out the process and associated standards for making a diagnosis of dementia in primary health care services, and by specialist memory assessment services.
  • Dementia ConnectApril 26 2018Dementia Connect is Alzheimer's Society's comprehensive services directory for people affected by dementia in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
  • Dementia and People with Learning DisabilitiesSeptember 18 2009This document jointly published by the Royal College of Psychiatrists and the British Psychological Society provides guidance on the assessment, diagnosis, treatment and support of people with learning disabilities who develop dementia.
  • UnforgettableApril 4 2019Unforgettable.org is a website offering advice and community as well as products to help improve the lives of people with dementia. It provides some interesting blogs of people's experiences with dementia including real stories and diaries.
  • A Guide to Respite for People Affected by DementiaNovember 26 2018This guide gives carers and people living with dementia the information they need when considering respite, to help them to explore respite alternatives, and sets out their rights.
  • Gwent Access to AdvocacyAugust 30 2019Gwent Access to Advocacy GATA provides a single point of access for advocacy services in Gwent covering Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Monmouthshire and Torfaen. (For Newport contact Dewis Centre for Independent Living (CIL))
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