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Dying with dementia at home – but relying on emergency care

The number of people with dementia who visit the emergency department in their last year of life is rising, prompting calls for better care planning and more support for families. 
Dementia

The number of people with dementia who visit the emergency department in their last year of life is rising, prompting calls for better care planning and more support for families

More people with dementia are dying at home and not in hospital, an indication that end of life care is improving. However, this does not mean they are spending their final months, weeks and days surrounded by home comforts, away from the clinical setting.

A study of almost 5,000 people with dementia has revealed that nearly eight out of ten attended the emergency department at least once in the last year of life, with some attending multiple times. Almost half were there in the last month of life, and a fifth died within a week of their last visit to the emergency department.

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