Coronavirus (COVID-19) dementia action plan: equality impact assessment

This equality impact assessment (EQIA) considers evidence around equalities categories and outlines a number of actions required to ensure equitable access to the policies in our national action plan to continue to support recovery for people with dementia and their carers.

Equality Impact Assessment Record

Title of policy/ practice/ strategy/ legislation etc.

'Dementia And COVID-19 - National Action Plan To Continue To Support Recovery For People With Dementia And Their Carers'


Clare Haughey - Minister for Mental Health

Lead official

Naomi Magnus

Officials involved in the EQIA

Names: Naomi Magnus, David Berry, Jan Beattie, Suzanne Kinross, Helen Mclellan, Linsey Oughton

Team: Dementia, Learning Disabilities & Autism

Directorate: Division: Team

Directorate for Mental Health and Social Care

Is this new policy or revision to an existing policy?

Revision to an existing policy


Policy Aim

1. The Dementia and COVID-19 National Action Plan explains how the Scottish Government is working and plans to work with others to support people with dementia and their families to continue to get the right care, treatment support at the right time as we live with and come through the COVID-19 pandemic.

2. The plan:

  • recognises the huge impact of the pandemic on people with dementia, their families and carers;
  • recognises that people living with dementia and their carers often feel alone, vulnerable and anxious about COVID;
  • recognises the particular worries families have about what the future holds for their loved ones with dementia;
  • uses what we have learned from the experiences people with dementia and their families have told us and others to respond to their needs during the pandemic;
  • sets out how we plan to help people with dementia and those that love and care for them to live well with dementia across the whole journey of the illness - and how we plan to reduce the risk of dementia;
  • sets out the things we have done so far to respond to the pandemic and the things we will keep on doing
  • Reinforces our shared human-rights based and person-centred approach to supporting people with dementia and their families and carers.

Who will it affect?

3. This plan aims to support people with dementia and their families to continue to get the right care, treatment and support at the right time as we live with, and come through, the COVID-19 pandemic.

4. Consensus on overall estimated dementia prevalence in Scotland is approximately 90,000 people currently living with dementia. Around two-thirds are living at home at any one time, with the remainder in residential care with a small number in hospital care settings. People with dementia account for at least 66% of the care home population in Scotland and growing.

5. Estimated annual diagnosed dementia incidence is approximately 20,000 by 2020, with roughly the same number of people dying with dementia each year. It is most common in older people but can affect people in their 40s or 50s, or even younger (Alzheimer Scotland).

6. The number of deaths from dementia including Alzheimer's disease rose by a quarter during the first wave of COVID-19 in Scotland (National Records of Scotland). Evidence has shown that dementia is also the most common underlying condition in people dying from COVID-19 in Scotland (National Records of Scotland).

What might prevent the desired outcomes being achieved?

7. The EQIA describes a number of actions that are considered necessary in helping to achieve the Scottish Government's Dementia and COVID-19 National Action Plan. The scope of this EQIA is to provide an equality assurance for the proposed actions.

8. In developing this EQIA the Scottish Government is mindful of the three needs of the Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) - eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation, advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not, and foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not - and recognises while the measures may positively impact on one or more of the protected characteristics.[1] Where any negative impacts have been identified, we have sought to mitigate/eliminate these. We are also mindful that the equality duty is not just about negating or mitigating negative impacts, as we also have a positive duty to promote equality. We have sought to do this through provisions contained in the Regulations, or by current support and guidance available.



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