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Dementia

Volume 506: debated on Thursday 4 March 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many staff in a (a) elderly mentally infirm and (b) standard care home are required to have a qualification in dementia awareness; (319959)

(2) Health what recent estimate he has made of the (a) length of stay in care homes of residents with dementia and (b) proportion of residents in care homes with a diagnosis of dementia.

The Care Homes Regulations 2001 - Regulation 18 - require homes to

“ensure that at all times suitably qualified, competent and experienced persons are working at the care home in such numbers as are appropriate for the health and welfare of service users”.

This will include ensuring that there are suitable numbers of staff trained and able to care for residents with dementia.

We are informed by the NHS Information Centre that data on the length of stay in care homes of residents with dementia and the proportion of residents in care homes with a diagnosis of dementia are not collected centrally.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) registers care homes under the Care Standards Act 2000 (CSA), which remains operational until 30 September 2010. The CSA makes no provision for a registration category of “elderly mentally infirm”. Homes are registered with CQC as care homes or care homes with nursing.

Subject to the approval of Parliament, care homes will be registered from 1 October 2010 under the 'regulated activity' in which they are engaged - that is, 'accommodation for persons who require nursing or personal care'. It will be for CQC to decide whether to record detailed information for each care home, such as whether it provides care for people with dementia.