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Care sector news review: May

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Welcome back for the May edition of Care Sector News Review.

Each month, we'll introduce you to some of the most compelling new articles and research relating to care services, medical research and awareness initiatives.

Read on to find out what's been happening in the care sector throughout May:

Care news

  • Responsibility for unpaid parental care falls disproportionately on women, specifically daughters, according to a new study from Stanford University. Daughters were found to be 28% more likely to care for parents than sons, while women took on two-thirds of all unpaid elderly care.
  • Increased adoption of digital resources could improve overall care standards for older people and save the government millions of pounds in funding. This was the argument put forward by Jim Davies of tech firm Mitel in an Information Age article published earlier on this month.
  • Care quality inspectors have found that older people wait an average of 100 days to have their care needs assessed. The report – which focused on people receiving care in Edinburgh – concluded that older people had to be in "critical" need before receiving the necessary support.

Medical research

  • A combination of tests could help ensure Alzheimer's is detected earlier than ever before, according to a research team from University College London. The study aims to distinguish between regular signs of age-related cognitive decline and the earliest stages of Alzheimer's.
  • Dementia is likely to overtake cancer as the single biggest cause of mortality by 2040, new research from Kings College London has found. The institution has called on the NHS to implement measures to ensure these people will be able to gain access to the support they need.
  • The DAWN stroke trial has concluded that removing a blood clot within 24 hours of suffering a stroke can significantly improve health outcomes. Patients who received this treatment were found to recover faster and be at a lower risk of long-term disability.
  • A research initiative funded by Cancer Research UK will try to establish whether analysis of medical records can enable GPs to diagnose cancer earlier. This is based on overseas studies that identified a correlation between cancer diagnosis and the prescriptions given in preceding years.

Awareness initiatives

  • The Stroke Association held their annual awareness month in May. Dubbed 'Make May Purple', the initiative asks participants to help raise awareness and funds for research into treatments for the condition.
  • 14–18 May marked Dementia Awareness Week. The event – organised by the Alzheimer's Society – aims to bring people together to "urgently find a cure, improve care and offer help and understanding".
  • National Share-a-Story Month also took place in May. While primarily aimed at children, the event provided a great opportunity for older people to pass on wisdom and spend quality time with younger generations.
  • The public were asked to walk for 20 minutes per day to mark National Walking Month 2017. This inclusive initiative is designed to get people active and assess accessibility in public areas. Both of these are important considerations for older people.

Join us again at the end of June for the next edition of Care Sector News Review.

Find out more about how The Good Care Group supports older people and the care sector as a whole.

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