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Alzheimer Europe publishes 2018 Yearbook comparing national dementia strategies

Friday 22 February 2019

At the 24th Alzheimer Europe Conference in Glasgow in 2014, The Glasgow Declaration was launched, calling for the creation of a European Dementia Strategy and for the development of national strategies in every European country. Since then, a considerable number of national governments have published national dementia strategies. Almost five years on from the Glasgow Declaration, our 2018 Yearbook has been published, comparing 21 dementia strategies (or national plans) and two neurodegenerative strategies across European countries, with a specific view to providing a comparative overview of the priorities and areas of focus. Doing so has allowed us to establish not only what areas of dementia policy and practice are being prioritised by national governments, but also the diversity of approaches to these issues. The main body of the report is broken down into five main headings, which are then further subdivided into specific subject areas. The five main headings are:

  • Development and implementation of strategies.
  • Human rights and legal matters.
  • Diagnosis, post diagnostic sport, care and treatment.
  • Informal carers.
  • Research

These headings reflect the most frequently recurring themes across all of the strategies reviewed, regardless of differences in terms of population size, economic status or healthcare systems. Specifically, considering the commitments and policies contained within the strategies, it is apparent that the greatest number relate to the provision of health and social care services for people with dementia. This includes a focus on care coordination, diagnosis, treatment and the training of health and social care practitioners. Aside from these service-focused commitments, awareness raising amongst the public and improved infrastructure and resources for research were also areas of significant focus for many of the strategies.

The analysis of the policies and commitments within the national dementia strategies are done so at face value; with the exception of where strategies have had mid-point reviews or evaluation, this report does not focus on the implementation or progress of commitments or policies within the strategies. As such, where a country or strategy is not included under a certain section or subsection of the report, it should not be inferred that the country is not carrying out work in this area – it simply reflects that there was a lack of reference to this area within the country’s strategy. Equally, the inclusion of commitments or action points within the report are not a guarantee that they have, or will be, implemented.

The report also contains person contributions from the European Working Group of People with Dementia (EWGPWD), sharing their personal views and experiences in relation to specific themes identified within the strategies. The report has now been published in English and copies can be ordered from: https://www.alzheimer-europe.org/Publications

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