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What is Dementia?

Dementia is the gradual loss of mental abilities such as thinking, reasoning and remembering. It is not a disease, but symptoms such as loss of memory, confusion, and changes in personality, mood and behaviour that may accompany some diseases or conditions affecting the brain.

Dementia usually affects older people and becomes more common with age, although it can develop in younger people. Most people who develop dementia are over the age of 60 but it's important to remember that it is not a normal part of growing old and that most older people never develop dementia.

How to get help

Memory Assessment Services

Lancashire Care Foundation Trust Memory Assessment Services is a well-established multidisciplinary team. The service provides assessment, diagnosis and treatment of a dementia illness. The service offers a comprehensive assessment of an individual's memory, ensuring that a diagnosis is given in a timely manner. Following diagnosis, patients and their carers are signposted to services that can help individuals in coming to terms with their diagnosis. They can provide useful strategies to help people minimize their memory difficulties enabling them to live well with dementia.  If you are interested in this service for yourself or someone you care for, please speak to your doctor in the first instance, and your doctor can make a referral onto Memory Assessment Services.

There is a video on the East Lancs Dementia website which explains how a referral is made via the GP to the Memory Assessment Service and what will happen at the appointment at the Memory Assessment Service at Burnley General Hospital (Maple House): 

Who can get help from social care?

People with a confirmed medical diagnosis of dementia, or a vulnerable frail older adult showing signs of dementia, which is causing them to be more dependent on others for activities of daily living, are eligible for an social care assessment of their needs.  Carers, who need help and support to maintain their independence and quality of life, would also be eligible for an assessment of their needs.  A social care assessment will help us to work out just how much help is needed to make life easier for you.

What is an assessment?

After the assessment we will identify and agree your needs with you and discuss the help and support available to meet them, according to the seriousness of your situation.

If you don't qualify for a care package from Adult Social Care you could arrange to employ a care worker privately through a Home Care Agency but remember to take care to choose one that is registered and inspected by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Follow the link below for more information or visit the CQC website.

List of registered care agencies

How much does it cost?

There may be some cost but the actual amount you pay will depend on what services you receive.

Can I get help with the cost?

It is possible. We will help you fill out a financial assessment form to see if you qualify for financial help. To get a rough idea of costs you can carry out a quick, confidential financial self assessment, online.

How much will I pay for services?


Do you want more choice and control?

We may provide or arrange services for you but if you want more choice and control over your own life then you might be interested in Self Directed Support. This means that you have a Personal Budget, or Direct Payment, from us and use it to arrange your own support.

Self Directed Support and Personal Budgets


Case studies

Click here to see an example of how Blackburn with Darwen Carers Service and adult social care have helped a lady from Darwen care for her husband who has vascular dementia. 

Click here to read how telecare equipment has helped a daughter from Blackburn care for her mother with Alzheimer's disease.

How to get in touch

The Adult Social Care Customer Liaison Team is the first point of contact for all referrals and general enquiries. You can contact them from 8.45am to 5pm, Monday to Friday on (01254) 587547. 

When you contact us we'll discuss your situation over the phone, check that we've got all our facts straight and then follow this up with a visit to your home to discuss the best way to meet your needs.

Useful contacts

Care Quality Commission (CQC)
Address: Citygate, Gallowgate, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 4PA
Phone: 03000 616161
Fax: 03000 616171

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