People, purpose and power

A majority of people with dementia reside in the community, yet the support needed for social inclusion and a life well lived is not widely available, says a report from the Dementia Change Action Network (DCAN).

DCAN, founded in 2020 as a collaborative network focused on personalised care, made its name during the pandemic, sharing tips on its pop-up website about what to do in lockdown and co-producing ways to help people facing longer delays for a diagnosis (

A new discussion paper from DCAN, “Place, People, Purpose and Power,” looking at the potential of personalised care to promote the wellbeing of people with dementia, says that 50% of people living with dementia do not draw on community-based services with studies indicating that public spending cuts have fallen particularly hard on services and support for older people.

“If the over-riding goal of personalised or person-centred care is to promote our wellbeing, then its task is to support us (and the people in our lives) to continue to sustain and nourish our personhood through these interactions and to avoid undermining or displacing them,” writes the report author Neil Crowther, co-convenor of the system change movement Social Care Future.