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2013: National policies covering the care and support of people with dementia and their carers

Country comparisons

It gives me great pleasure to present the Dementia in Europe Yearbook 2013. In addition to the Annual Report of Alzheimer Europe for 2012, it contains our work on national policies relating to the care and support of people with dementia and their carers, as well as details of the prevalence of dementia in the 28 member states of the European Union (currently 8.7 million) and Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Jersey and Turkey (currently just over 0.5 million). Details of the prevalence of dementia in each country can be found in the relevant sections of this report, as well as in Appendix 1 where we have included a European overview with an explanation about prevalence and the basis for our calculations.

The report provides information about the situation in 33 countries regarding national policies focusing on the provision of care, the training of healthcare professionals and social care staff, and support at home, in the community and in nursing homes. As many countries do not yet have a national dementia strategy, we asked experts to provide us also with details of any other relevant policy provisions (e.g. guidelines, laws and regulations). In some countries (Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Spain, Slovakia and Iceland), we were unfortunately unable to provide full reports as we lacked access to the relevant information and expertise.

Since the publication of our last Yearbook in December 2012, Switzerland, Scotland, and Luxembourg have introduced new or updated national dementia strategies and others have made significant progress with draft plans: in Portugal, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Slovenia and Ireland. This report should therefore be considered as a kind of snapshot of provisions for the care and support of people with dementia and carers (up to November 2013), but nevertheless a useful overview of current national provisions in Europe and a useful tool for policy makers interested in monitoring progress or developing new dementia strategies.

Alongside national provisions, national Alzheimer associations provide a great deal of support to people with dementia and their carers. Wherever possible, we have included details of the services and support they offer and a comparative table can be found in Appendix 2. When comparing the data, it is important to bear in mind that the level and type of support provided is dependent on the resources, structure and goals of national Alzheimer associations, combined with the kind of support already provided by the state and other organisations. Tables comparing the involvement of healthcare professionals in dementia care and support, and where people with dementia receive care, can also be found in Appendix 2.

Most of the reports were written by or with the assistance of Alzheimer Europe’s member associations and a few by external experts. We are immensely grateful to all those who made this report possible and their names can be found at the end of each section and in the acknowledgements section at the end of the report. I would also like to thank our staff members, Dianne Gove, Alex Teligadas and Annette Dumas, for compiling the various reports and Katherine Ellis for proofreading and preparing the comparative tables.

We hope that this information will enable readers to gain an impression of how different countries have addressed these important issues and that policy makers will be inspired by some of the solutions adopted in different countries, perhaps adapting some to their own situation, in order to improve the care and support of people with dementia and their carers in Europe.

Jean Georges

Executive Director

Alzheimer Europe



Last Updated: Friday 08 July 2016


  • Acknowledgements

    The above information was published in the 2013 Dementia in Europe Yearbook as part of Alzheimer Europe's 2013 Work Plan which received funding from the European Union in the framework of the Health Programme.
  • European Union