Fewer than half of the estimated 670,000 people with dementia typically receive a formal diagnosis, and the government has the well-intentioned aspiration to increase dementia diagnosis rates in England to two-thirds by 2015.
A GP writing in the British Medical Journal has warned about the possible disadvantages of over-diagnosis and mis-diagnosis. He also alerts readers to the risks of diagnosis geared to centrally-imposed case-finding targets, potentially resulting in perverse behaviours and outcomes.
Other commentators, otherwise in favour of improving performance on timely diagnosis, have warned of the relative lack of capacity in the health and care system for post-diagnostic support.
Dementia diagnosis drive raises concern. London: BBC Health News, April 2nd 2014.
This relates to:
Brunet, M. (2014). Targets for dementia diagnoses will lead to overdiagnosis. BMJ, April 1st 2014, Vol. 348, g2224.