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The Nationwide is offering a dedicated phone service to customers with a mental illness or dementia.

The aim of the helpline is that it will provide extra financial support for those affected by a range of illnesses, including dementia.

Those manning the line will have the power to waive late payment fees, extend overdrafts and offer mortgage repayment holidays to callers.

The service first started as a helpline specifically for people affected by cancer, and was launched in October last year. Helpline operators were trained by the charity Macmillan.

However, the service proved so successful that it was extended to those with heart problems and motor neuron disease this year.

Since it launched, 1,300 customers have used the special helpline.

Of those, 271 were referred to Macmillan’s financial advisers for further help and received £170,000 in benefits they hadn’t previously known about.

Now Nationwide aims to extend it further so that by January 2017 it will be able to help those affected by depression, dementia and Parkinson’s disease with any financial queries, while having an understanding of the challenges they may face when it comes to managing finances or talking on the phone.

Hopefully, the helpline operators will then be able to pass on customers to the relevant dementia charities or websites to provide them with information and services.

Once again, we feel this is a very encouraging step in the right direction for the UK becoming a more dementia-friendly society.

Source: www.thisismoney.co.uk