MEMORY CLINICS IN IRELAND: RESULTS OF A 2017 REVIEW

Abstract Ref: 
0233

Emer Begley1, Matthew Gibb2, Anna de Siún1
1National Dementia Office, Tullamore, Ireland
2Dementia Services Information and Development Centre, Dublin, Ireland

Background: In 2017 a review of memory clinics across Ireland was undertaken building
on previous research by Cahill, Pierce and Moore (2013).
The review examined the location and staff composition of memory clinics and the
extent and type of service provided.

Methods: All known memory clinics from across the country were identified and invited
to complete an electronic questionnaire. Of a total of 25 clinics identified, 25 took part in
the review.

Results: Findings show that a third of all memory clinics were based in the Dublin area
while there were none in the Northwest of the country. All, bar one, offered an assessment
and diagnostic service and the majority were based in a hospital setting.
The majority of memory clinics received referrals for people aged under 65 years (N
= 21), however there was a small number who had a restricted service to those aged 65
years and over. The type and extent of health and social care professional input was not
standardised across the sample; although most reported operating with a multidisciplinary
team.
Clinics also varied considerably in how often they ran, ranging from once every
two months to five days a week. Findings also showed considerable differences in the
type of post-diagnostic support offered to those who received a diagnosis of
dementia.

Conclusion: The review provides valuable data to support improved planning and
delivery of dementia diagnostic services as findings show there is geographical
inequality of access to memory clinic services. Results also present useful insights into
the type and extent of dementia post-diagnostic supports available through memory
clinics across the country.