Dementia NZ has welcomed increased monitoring of private dementia facilities after "horrifying" cases.
Paul Sullivan, chief executive of the charitable trust, said enabling the Ombudsman to inspect facilities was a much-needed step in the right direction.
"Some of the treatment in facilities that has been exposed is horrifying. It's vital that staff in dementia units are trained properly and treat people with dementia with respect and compassion," Sullivan said.
"Hopefully this monitoring will help highlight when that isn't happening."
The Office of the Ombudsman will have the power to randomly inspect about 180 privately-run dementia facilities, including those contained within aged care facilities and rest homes, in changes gazetted by Justice Minister Andrew Little this week.
The Herald has recently reported cases where elderly residents were strapped to chairs all day with minimal movement of repositioning.
Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier said his team would look out for those sorts of incidents. They will also begin monitoring detainees in court cells - opening up about 60 detention facilities to inspections.
It will take about 12 months for random inspections to start.
The number of New Zealanders with dementia is projected to nearly triple to about 170,000 by 2050.
Dementia NZ wants greater support and training not just for staff working in facilities but also family members and home carers who look after people with dementia at home.
"Often a person with dementia will end up in care earlier than they need to due to their carer becoming unwell or exhausted," Sullivan said.
Dementia NZ's local branches receive less than half of their funding from DHBs, and Sullivan said a lack of money limited the support offered to families.
• The Office of the Ombudsman's watchdog role will be expanded to include privately-run dementia facilities and detainees in court cells.
• The number of New Zealanders with dementia is projected to nearly triple to about 170,000 by 2050.