$44m extra in Budget 2011 for dementia care

  • Tony Ryall
Health Budget 2011

Budget 2011 delivers an extra $44 million over four years to look after people living with dementia. 

“This significant funding increase includes $40 million for residential dementia services. This is expected to lead to the provision of almost 200 extra dementia beds over the next two years,” Health Minister Tony Ryall says.

“Dementia is a severe and devastating disorder for both sufferers and their families – and with more of us living beyond 85 years, it is increasingly making itself felt in our communities.

“Many people with dementia are able to be cared for at home, but the demand for residential dementia care is also growing across the country.”

Another $4 million of new money is for additional respite care for full-time carers of people with dementia. This will include in-home respite.

“Last year's aged residential care services review identified the most pressing need to expand dementia units, beds and services. We are committed to ensuring the public health service supports all people with dementia and their families during a very difficult period in their lives.”

In addition, District Health Boards will provide an extra $60 million over four years - an increase of 1.7 per cent for all aged residential care services.

“Individual DHBs are also expanding and improving their local services for older people, including those with dementia, as part of their plans for 2011/12,” Mr Ryall says.

“Dementia is a key issue for our country into the future and we are committed to working to ensure people suffering from dementia receive quality services and live as good a life as possible – whether they live at home or in secure residential care.”