Media Alert - International Experts to Be the Change

Media Alert for Tuesday 17 October

International experts at conference to Be The Change

World-leading experts on dementia will assemble at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre next week for the 17th Alzheimer’s Australia Biennial National Dementia Conference. Prof Sam Gandy, from the Mount Sinai Medical Centre in New York, will present a keynote address on ‘What Would It Take to Get an Effective Alzheimer's Drug?’ Naomi Feil, pioneer of the world-renowned Validation method, will present on How to apply Validation techniques to older people living with dementia who exhibit behaviours of unmet need.


DATE: Tuesday 17 October (pre-conference workshops) to Friday 20 October

LOCATION: Melbourne Convention and Entertainment Centre


Program highlights

Wednesday 18 October

9:10 to 9:40am,

Official opening by Christine Bryden, author and dementia advocate;

9:40am to 10:10am

What Would It Take to Get an Effective Alzheimer's Drug?

Prof Sam Gandy, Mount Sinai Hospital, USA

Program highlights

Thursday 19 October

8.45am – 9.15am

Opening address by Kate Swaffer, CEO and co-founder of Dementia Alliance International;

9.15am – 9.45am

Validation: A Holistic Model address by Naomi Feil (USA), Developer of the Validation Method


Interviews may be arranged with all speakers including:

  • Prof Graeme Samuel AC, National President, Alzheimer’s Australia
  • Maree McCabe, National CEO Dementia Australia
  • Assoc Prof Michael Woodward, Chief Medical Advisor in Victoria, Alzheimer’s Australia

The program also features:

  • The Feed Your Senses space will showcase a dementia-friendly garden and cutting-edge technology designed to enhance the lives of people living with dementia, their care partners and families;
  • Five keynote presentations and 10 concurrent sessions from people living with dementia and their care partners.

For the full program or to register go to and follow #BeTheChange2017 on social media.



Alzheimer’s Australia is the charity for people with dementia and their families and carers. As the peak body, it provides advocacy, support services, education and information. An estimated 413,000 people have dementia in Australia. This number is projected to reach more than 1.1 million in 40 years.


National Dementia Helpline: 1800 100 500

An interpreter service is available                                                                                                    

(The National Dementia Helpline is an Australian Government Initiative)                                      

Dementia is a National Health Priority Area                                                                                        


Media contacts: Christine Bolt 0400 004 553 /; Phillip Money 0427 757 434 /