Diagnosis rates of dementia have increased by just two per cent to 43 per cent in the past year. This means most people with the condition are still being left without vital support and treatment.
In light of the new NHS data, the All Party Parliamentary Group on Dementia (APPG) is launching an inquiry into how to improve diagnosis rates.
The cross-party group of MPs and peers will aim to uncover why diagnosis might not be happening, why diagnosis rates differ around the country, the financial benefits of an early diagnosis and what is needed to support people following a diagnosis.
A survey carried out by Alzheimer's Society ahead of the inquiry launch found that one in five GPs do not feel well informed about the treatment and care available to patients with dementia. This placed dementia fourth out of five conditions which GPs were asked to say how well informed they felt. It ranked below asthma, diabetes and breast cancer but ahead of multiple sclerosis. GPs in London and Wales were more likely to not feel well informed than other parts of the UK (28 per cent and 29 per cent respectively).
Research by the Department of Health, ahead of their current dementia awareness campaign, also found that only around a third of adults aged over 40 understand the differences between normal signs of ageing and signs of dementia.