Torbay MP Kevin Foster met with Alzheimer’s Society to learn about the urgent need to make dementia a political priority.
This year, Alzheimer’s Society’s conference stand emphasised the striking fact dementia is the UK’s biggest killer. It is estimated one in three people born in the UK today will develop dementia in their lifetime.
Alzheimer’s Society also highlighted how dementia costs the UK £34.7bn a year, a figure that will rise to £94.1bn by 2040. By this same year, 1.6m people are expected to be living with dementia in the UK.
Right now, however, more than a third of people with dementia in England and Northern Ireland don’t have access to a diagnosis and the vital care and support it unlocks, while in Wales, around half of people with dementia are without a diagnosis.
Kevin discussed with Alzheimer’s Society representatives how this, along with historic underfunding of dementia research and an urgent need for social care reform, makes clear the case for prioritising dementia. With exciting new treatments for Alzheimer’s disease in the pipeline, he also heard how it is vital action is taken now to ensure people living with dementia can access these drugs as soon as they reach the UK market.
Kevin Foster MP said: “Dementia takes too many of our loved ones away every year, often leaving families having to see the person someone was disappear before them long before death arrives. I was pleased to meet with the Alzheimer’s Society and discuss how we can work together to make tackling dementia a key priority for our health service.”
James White, Head of National Influencing at Alzheimer’s Society, said: “We thank Kevin for engaging with us at Conference, and pledging to support us to make dementia a priority.
With one in three people born in the UK today expected to develop dementia in their lifetime, it’s vital that politicians prioritise tackling this disease. This means driving up diagnosis rates, reforming the social care system and bolstering dementia research to provide help and hope for everyone affected by dementia.”
Support and more information about a diagnosis is just a phone call or a click away. Visit alzheimers.org.uk/memoryloss or call Alzheimer’s Society on 0333 150 3456
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