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Local MP elected Vice Chair of parliamentary group to help dementia sufferers

June 19, 2007 12:00 AM

Tim at the launch of the All Party Parliamentary Group on DementiaThe estimated 1355 people with dementia and the thousands who care for them in Westmorland and Lonsdale have won the support of Tim Farron, the MP for the area and Vice Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Dementia campaigning to make their condition a national priority.

Mr Farron joined the APPG recently, and the Group met for the first time on Monday (18 June). The members who include MPs and peers from across the country are calling for dementia to be made a national health and social care priority. Their action follows the release of the Dementia UK report, which revealed the number of people living with dementia in the UK will rise from 700,000 today people to more than one million in less than 20 years. The Alzheimer's Society report calls for a national dementia strategy to meet the challenge of an ageing population.

Tim Farron said:

"I am really pleased to support this All Parliamentary Group on dementia and represent the people in the area who live with this devastating condition. This is an issue which touches people of all ages in the community - those with a diagnosis, their children, grandchildren, friends and carers.

"I was particularly pleased to meet with John and Mary Stevenson, constituents of mine who have extensive experience in this area and have campaigned tirelessly."

Neil Hunt, chief executive of the Alzheimer's Society, says:

"I am delighted that Mr Farron has added his weight behind the All Parliamentary Group on Dementia to help make this devastating, incurable condition a political priority. We cannot afford to ignore the challenge of dementia, but planning now and developing a national dementia strategy will save lives and money in the future."

The first-ever meeting of the All Parliamentary Group on Dementia was followed by a reception attended by actress Lynda Bellingham, MPs and peers. At the event people with dementia and their carers will launch the Alzheimer's Society's report Social Care: A Lifeline For People with Dementia and their Carers. The experiences of people with dementia and their carers formed the basis of the report, part of the charity's campaign for quality dementia care. The report highlights the vital role that social care services play in supporting people with their dementia and their carers everyday, from providing help with eating and washing to support taking part in community activities. It calls for increased access to a range of social care services for people with dementia and their carers.