The report “Dementia: a public health priority” has been jointly developed by WHO and Alzheimer's Disease International. The purpose of this report is to raise awareness of dementia as a public health priority, to articulate a public health approach and to advocate for action at international and national levels.
Dementia is a syndrome that affects memory, thinking, behaviour and ability to perform everyday activities. The number of people living with dementia worldwide is currently estimated at 35.6 million. This number will double by 2030 and more than triple by 2050. Dementia is overwhelming not only for the people who have it, but also for their caregivers and families. There is lack of awareness and understanding of dementia in most countries, resulting in stigmatization, barriers to diagnosis and care, and impacting caregivers, families and societies physically, psychologically and economically.
The report is expected to facilitate governments, policy-makers, and other stakeholders to address the impact of dementia as an increasing threat to global health. It is hoped that the report will promote dementia as a public health and social care priority worldwide.