This report follows the recent publication by the National Council on Ageing and Older People of An Action Plan for Dementia (1999). That report was requested by the then Minister for Health to consider ways in which services for people with dementia and their carers might be improved. The report also complements a recent unpublished Council study on quality and effectiveness of long-term care provision for older people in Ireland. An Action Plan for Dementia aims to serve as a model of best practice for the provision and planning of services to meet the individual needs of people with dementia and their carers. The report takes as its guiding principle the recognition of the individuality of the person with dementia and her or his individual needs. The objective of th Councils programme of research in the area of dementia is the creation of a person-centred, positive and holistic approach to the development of dementia services in Ireland. This report takes a quantitative approach focusing on the cost of providing care for people with dementia. The report adopts a broad service philosophy that home care is generally more preferable to residential care and that care services should be personcentred. The Council endorses and advocates such a philosophy in caring for older people. This is also in keeping with principles set out in Shaping a Healthier Future and in particular the target set therein that 90 per cent of people over 75 should reside in their own homes in the community.