29 Oct 2009 16:22
GP dementia investigation makes national news
The Telegraph online today
A GP newspaper investigation has made national news with the revelation that more than half of the UK’s health trusts are failing to offer alternatives to anti-psychotic drugs for dementia patients, despite well-known risks.
Sanjay Tanday’s story was circulated by the Press Association newswire and picked up by the Daily Mail and the Telegraph.
In all stories, GP editor Emma Bower was quoted as saying: “Over the past year GP has been investigating some of the problems faced by GPs and their patients with dementia.
“We have found that many primary care trusts are failing to commission specialist services to support patients with dementia,” she said. “This often leaves GPs with little choice but to prescribe anti-psychotics when patients become agitated and disturbed because there is no other support available.”
Anti-psychotic drugs are known to triple the risk of stroke and double the risk of death.
Tanday, who is GP’s senior clinical reporter, is nominated for New Business News Journalist of the Year in this year’s PTC New Journalist of the Year Awards.
Figures from another of his exclusives revealed widespread cuts to dementia services and was used to launch the Daily Mail Action on Alzheimer’s campaign late last year.