Memory Assessment Service
What is The Memory Assessment Service?
The Memory Service is a specialist assessment service within the NHS that aims to meet the needs of people who are concerned that they may have a memory problem. The team is made up of specialist doctors, nurses, occupational therapists and psychologists. They assess and diagnose the nature of the person’s memory difficulties, report this to the family doctor and advise on further treatment or intervention.
Bedfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group (BCCG) and East London Foundation NHS Trust (ELFT) have implemented a new way of providing ongoing medical reviews for people with dementia.
The Memory Assessment Services (MAS) will continue to assess people with suspected dementia. This will include being able to tell you what type of dementia it is and what, if any, treatment or therapy options are available. MAS will start any dementia medications and change the dosages until the person is stable and responding well. Once this has happened, usually after about 6 months, the GP will then be asked to provide future reviews. Each patient's GP will arrange for an annual review to include:
- Memory, concentration, attention. This may involve a 'memory test'.
- Behaviour changes
- Daily living skills like managing personal care and day to day activities
- Physical health or medications
GPs will refer patients back to Community Mental Health Services if they need specialist assessment or treatment as the condition progresses, and in urgent cases, the person will be seen within 3 working days.
By working in this way community mental health services will be able to respond to people with dementia rapidly and there will also be a reduction in assessment waiting times so people will be given a diagnosis more quickly.