Dementia strategy: initial 2-year delivery plan - 2024 to 2026

This delivery plan sets out how Scottish Government and COSLA will work with the voices of lived experience and delivery partners to begin to realise the vision for change set out in our new dementia strategy for Scotland: Everyone's Story

How We’ll Deliver

We know that dementia can affect every aspect of a person’s life and that this extends to the impacts on care partners/unpaid carers and families. This means that we must work collaboratively with people with lived experience, across national government, local government, with professional bodies and with third and independent sector organisations and in and with the communities where people live and want to remain living.

Principles for delivery

Everyone’s Story sets out the principles that inform the strategy and its delivery. Recognising that some communities are less likely to access advice and support, we will actively include those whose voices have been missing from previous strategy delivery. This includes people with a learning disability, minority ethnic communities, care home residents, LGBT+ communities, island and rural communities, and those with sensory loss as well as recognising that more work is needed on understanding women’s increased risk of dementia. In promoting inclusion, we endeavour to make sure people with dementia and their care partners/unpaid carers are free from discrimination based on any grounds such as age, disability, sex/ gender, race, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, social or other status.

In describing how we will deliver the priorities of this plan, we add the following to the principles detailed in the strategy:

person-centred, placing the needs and aspiration of a whole person front and centre of support, treatment and care.

trauma-informed, reflecting broader policy ambitions to raise awareness, knowledge and confidence amongst the Scottish workforce to embed trauma-informed practice throughout services.

community-led, in recognition of the growing evidence of the value and impact of community-led activity in directly supporting people with dementia and their care partners/unpaid carers and in contributing to the growth of dementia inclusive communities.

peer-led, in recognition of the value and impact of peer-led activity for those directly involved as well as communities, services and organisations who learn from the activity.

challenge stigma, as well as the detail of the public-facing anti-stigma campaign as a deliverable, this approach will underpin all activity detailed in this plan.

The comprehensive impact assessments that accompany this delivery plan will steer and provide a benchmark for our approach to more inclusive policy delivery. Work that is shaping governance of the National Care Service will also underpin the implementation of this plan.

Everyone’s Story signals a new approach to addressing the challenges that people living with dementia and their care partners/unpaid carers face in Scotland. The strategy sets out a fundamental change in approach, one that moves everyone involved and with an interest, into a more robust space for ultimately transforming how people experience dementia.

We recognise that this first delivery plan reflects long term work that may show a range of shorter-, medium- and longer-term benefits.

This plan signals the start of a long term change covering:

  • the data we gather and publish in a proportionate way;
  • Quality Improvement (QI) and the learning from QI processes including those led by Healthcare Improvement Scotland’s Focus on Dementia improvement programme to help address variation in practice;
  • how we understand the factors affecting people with protected characteristics;
  • the research commissioned and how this translates into action;
  • how we connect with and embed changes as part of wider, integrated system reform that needs to embed the needs of people living with dementia;
  • how financial investment is tracked and reported on; and
  • how we move to include a community-led approach to dementia support.

These are the overarching, long-term enablers of change and improvement that apply to all the themes and priorities that have been progressed by multi-agency, multi-sector working groups since the launch of the strategy.

Case Study – Playlist For Life In Fife

Following initial research into the use of music in a hospital ward setting, NHS Fife commissioned and helped deliver accredited training in partnership with Playlist for Life. This training enables ward teams in hospitals to work with people receiving care for dementia, their families and care partners to identify personally meaningful music. These songs are then downloaded to an MP3 music device to be listened to by the individual.

By listening to music (including with their care partner), people receiving dementia care in these settings saw significant improvements in their health and wellbeing. This ranged from decreased stress and anxiety to being more able to engage and interact with staff and the person’s care partners. In turn staff were able to form more meaningful connections with their patients.

Figure 1 outlines both the change that will be delivered in the first two years as well as the levers or building blocks we will use to deliver the longer-term change our stakeholders want and need.

Figure 1: Levers and building blocks we will use to deliver
The key deliverables 0f 2024 to 2026 contain a number of building blocks and levers. These include Data, principles, governance, trauma informed, digital, anti stigma, collaboration and coordination, community led, workforce, peer led, inclusion, human rights and a person centred approach.

Graphic text below:

  • Workforce
  • Person-centred
  • Human Rights
  • Inclusion
  • Peer-led
  • Data
  • Community-led
  • Principles
  • Collaboration and co-ordination
  • Governance
  • Trauma-informed
  • Anti-stigma
  • Digital

Key Deliverables 2024-2026

  • A public facing campaign that challenges the stigma associated with dementia, co-produced with the National Dementia Lived Experience Panel
  • Establish a cross governmental, cross sectoral oversight group to support learning from the Aberdeen Brain Health Service including from an independent evaluation of the service.
  • Establish a short life working group on workforce learning and development needs, now and in future
  • Independent evaluation of Scotland’s Post-Diagnostic policy and delivery, including the perspective of care partners/unpaid carers
  • Resilient Communities Programme Board to identify priorities and allocate funding to grow a sustainable community sector
  • Extend the data collected and published on diagnosis and Post-Diagnostic Support to include demographic and qualitative detail.



Back to top