The recent plan by the UK government to introduce mandatory dementia tests to elderly people, over the age of 75 visiting GP's as a way to detect the condition early, has not been taken very well by some doctors, who feel this move may be a deterrent to approaching GP's.
This is the recent directive by Prime Minister David Cameron, who has said that older people must be checked for dementia when they visit the doctor, even if it was for some other reason.
Some GPs have expressed concern about older patients getting put off from approaching their doctors even for routine issues. According to statistics, nearly 800,000 Britons are currently receiving treatment for dementia. Some 400,000 may not be diagnosed yet.
The GPs' letter reads: 'A diagnosis of dementia is a life-changing event. The Government's NHS Mandates states: 'Dementia is the illness most feared by people in England over the age of 55. There is a danger that older patients will avoid visiting their doctor with health problems, for fear of being given a diagnosis they do not wish to have.'