On 21st September, World Alzheimer Day, Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI), published the 2015 edition of The World Alzheimer Report, ‘The Global Impact of Dementia: An analysis of prevalence, incidence, cost and trends’ which looks at the incidence and impact of dementia worldwide and makes recommendations to provide a global framework for action on dementia.
The report also estimates how the number of people living with dementia will increase in the future (it is expected to almost double every 20 years), making dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease and other causes, “one of the biggest global public health and social care challenges facing people today and in the future”.
Seizing the occasion of the international day, the United Nations expert on the enjoyment of all human rights by older persons, Rosa Kornfeld-Matte, highlighted the failure at international and national levels to adequately address the situation of older persons with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Many of them are the victims of multiple forms of discrimination, abuse and neglect in communities and care settings, and their number is likely to increase rapidly in the coming decades with the projected rise in prevalence.
Mrs Kornfeld-Matte urged governments to adopt human rights-based national strategies which will improve the quality of life of the millions of older persons currently living with dementia and also help reduce the risk of dementia for future generations.
If nothing is done now, “the whole of society will pay the cost of the current inaction”, states the UN expert.