Quarter of Covid-19 Deaths Have Dementia

Are those with Dementia struggling because of Covid-19?

Social isolation during the pandemic has affected everyone, depriving us all of valuable face-to-face time with family and friends.

But no group caught up in this crisis has been worst hit than those living with dementia.

Not only do they account for a quarter of all deaths in the UK from Covid-19, the lockdown is also having a devastating impact on their wellbeing.

A survey by Alzheimer’s Society of 128 care homes reveals nearly 80% have seen a deterioration in the health of residents with dementia due to lack of social contact.

Our Dementia Connect support line is receiving hundreds of calls from relatives of loved ones in care homes, where at least 70% of residents have dementia, telling heart-breaking stories of people feeling confused and abandoned by the lack of visits.

People living with dementia benefit from routine in their lives, but the restrictions currently in place have turned their world upside down.

Many are battling with depression and do not understand why they can no longer see family and friends. The lack of social contact is causing many to lose skills and independence

Alzheimer’s Society believes the Government must prioritise safe social contact for care home residents as a health emergency by: 

  • Issuing guidance for care homes on the importance of social contact
  • Ensuring enough personal protective equipment (PPE) for staff and visitors to allow social contact safely
  • Placing family carers of people with dementia first on the list to get antibody tests. 

Urgent action is needed now to minimise the devastating effects of this pandemic on the most vulnerable people in our society.

  • Ken Oxley is Media Officer for Alzheimer’s Society in the North East and Cumbria

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