Dementia needs to be core business for governments’ health, ageing and disability sectors

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Dementia Australia has welcomed a report released yesterday by Alzheimer’s Disease International saying world governments are too slow in tackling the dementia epidemic. 

Dementia Australia CEO Maree McCabe said Dementia Australia supports the Federal Government’s health spending and $5 billion commitment to the aged care sector in its 2018-2019 Budget, however there remains a need for dementia-specific funding. 

“The recent Federal Government budget included many measures that would significantly improve the lives of older Australians,” she said. 

“We were very pleased to note that the budget included $5.3 million for dementia innovation which will benefit people living with dementia. 

“Whilst we welcome the government’s expenditure on aged care, disability and healthcare, dementia is still not core business in all of these sectors. 

“Dementia is one of the greatest health and social challenges facing Australia, and indeed the rest of the world, with one person globally developing dementia every three seconds.” 

In 2018, there are more than 425,000 Australians living with dementia and this number is expected to increase to more than 1.1 million by 2056 in the absence of a medical breakthrough.  

Dementia is estimated to cost Australia more than $15 billion this year and is the second leading cause of death of all Australians and the leading cause of death of Australian women. 

In 2017, the World Health Organisation (WHO) adopted a global action plan for dementia. The plan includes seven areas for action for countries to focus on to improve the quality of life of people living with dementia, their carers and families. 

“Dementia must be explicitly acknowledged as a public healthcare challenge and work towards being core business for our health, ageing and disability sectors,” Ms McCabe said. 

“Dementia Australia will continue to work with people with dementia, their families, carers, government and other stakeholders to ensure quality dementia supports and services are embedded into service planning, delivery and workforce education, ensuring people living with dementia are supported to live the best quality of life possible.” 

To read the full report published by Alzheimer’s Disease International please follow this link


Dementia Australia is the national peak body and charity for people, of all ages, living with all forms of dementia, their families and carers. It provides advocacy, support services, education and information. An estimated 425,000 people have dementia in Australia. This number is projected to reach more than 1.1 million by 2056. Dementia Australia is the new voice of Alzheimer’s Australia. Dementia Australia’s services are supported by the Australian Government.

National Dementia Helpline 1800 100 500

Interpreter service available (The National Dementia Helpline is an Australian Government Initiative)

Dementia is a National Health Priority Area

Media contacts: Christine Bolt 0400 004 553 [email protected] and Monika Boogs 0407 019 430 [email protected]

When talking or writing about dementia please refer to Dementia-Friendly Language Guidelines.