Backlog in memory clinics

Local memory clinics are “chronically understaffed and overworked,” Alzheimer’s Society has said, as a backlog of people waiting for assessments builds up and diagnosis rates take a hit from the pandemic.

“On a local level, we’ve heard that one memory clinic, which usually performs around 20 (memory) assessments per week, now has a nine-month waiting list for an assessment, with 700 people still waiting to be seen,” said head of public affairs and campaigns James White.

Diagnosis rates have fallen significantly below the 67% figure before the pandemic.  “We estimate that at least 33,000 more people who have dementia would have been diagnosed if the pandemic had not happened,” White said.

The Society is calling for a recovery plan and investment of at least £70 million over the next two years to tackle the backlog.