€3m support for early-onset dementia patients

Summary

The money will be used to provide 200 extra places in specialised care homes across the region, easing the physical, emotional and financial burden on carers

Familiar environment

An estimated 1,800 people in Flanders have a form of young-onset dementia – meaning they develop the condition before the age of 65. To help patients and families affected by the condition, the government of Flanders has now allocated funding worth €3 million to be divided between care homes that specifically cater for this age group.

After a call to the sector, 200 residential places have been approved in 23 care centres that are committed to caring for people with young-onset dementia in each of the Flemish provinces.

“The number of residential places provided was set per province at one per 15,000 inhabitants in the 30 to 64 age group, so that a spread of the supply of this special residential care offer is ensured,” said Flemish public health and welfare minister Jo Vandeurzen. “It is important that people with young-onset dementia can be cared for and supported as closely as possible to their familiar environment.”

Young-onset dementia is a condition that eventually requires care outside the family home in a care setting. A residential centre is a solution, but as well as the practical problems of moving, it can be expensive due to the combination of care costs and a reduction in family income.

Testimony from families coping with young-onset dementia show that the decision to move into a care home has a significant impact on the family budget that can lead to serious financial difficulties. The price of a place in a care home can be one reason patients may choose to stay in their own home for longer, which risks placing too heavy a burden on informal carers.

An overview of the latest funding and other available support is published by Jong Dementie.

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