Top coalition MPs have trained to be Dementia Friends, conference hears

BMJ 2014; 349 doi: (Published 05 December 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;349:g7482
  1. Nigel Hawkes
  1. 1London

The cabinet table at 10 Downing Street has seen many historic moments, but it has never before been the venue for a course in becoming a “Dementia Friend.”

The health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, told the independent think tank Reform’s annual conference in London on 2 December that, at that morning’s meeting, the entire cabinet had trained to join the Dementia Friends group—now 580 000 strong—which aims for a greater understanding of the condition and how to provide the small things that can make life easier for those who have it.

Ministers had been asked to guess how many steps are involved for a person with dementia to make a cup of tea. The answer, apparently, is 13 to 19, but Hunt did not say if any cabinet members got it right. The Dementia Friends scheme is part of the government’s focus on raising the profile …

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