New Online Dementia Training Tool for GPs
UK – A free training programme designed to raise awareness of dementia among doctors has been devised by the Alzheimer’s Society and BMJ Learning. The training programme was introduced after a recent survey by the society highlighted that only 37% of GPs in the UK have been on awareness training of this type.
The education division of the BMJ Group, BMJ Learning, is lending its medical educative expertise to the Alzheimer’s Society in order to tailor an online training programme. The training is a response to the overwhelming 71% of GPs who would like to know more about the management and symptoms of dementia.
Currently less than 50% of people with dementia are formally diagnosed due to various factors, such sufferers being too afraid to go and speak to their GP due to the stigma attached to the illness. Chief Executive of Alzheimer’s Society, Jeremy Hughes, believes that with the introduction of this training, GPs will be better equipped to support people with dementia.
Alzheimer’s Society will also be offering long term help to GPs alongside the online learning tool. GPs can expect help with signposting patients to dementia information services and support in assessing people with memory problems. Editor of BMJ Learning, Dr Kieran Walsh, is positive about the collaboration with Alzheimer’s Society and is confident that GPs will be able to provide the best treatment for their patients after learning more about dementia care on the online training tool.
A GP from Wigan described the new training tool as important due to the fact that doctors will be able to spot signs of dementia earlier on. Earlier detection will have a positive effect on providing treatment and support for people with signs of dementia, as the earlier the condition is treated the more effective the treatment will be.
Modules including non-drug treatments for behavioural symptoms and early diagnosis feature on the free training tool. Research by Alzheimer’s Society has shown that the current number of 800,000 people suffering from dementia in the UK will dramatically rise, to a million people in ten years’ time. The recent Alzheimer’s Society ‘Worried about your memory?’ campaign raised awareness of dementia within GP practices. The Society’s survey was part of the evaluation for the campaign in order to promote early diagnosis of dementia in the UK.
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