UK to double spending on dementia

Leading nations had committed to developing a cure or treatment for dementia by 2025 at the G8 dementia summit(2013).David Cameron had announced the UK’s plan to double its annual funding for dementia research to £132m by 2025.

The announcement was made ahead of the G8’s dementia summit and has been welcomed by sufferers and their families who understand the importance of research and support.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt states: “This mustn’t be about paying lip service to dementia, it must be about actually changing things – and the biggest thing we can do is make sure we have a proper diagnosis to people.

“By the end of this Parliament we will have doubled the money going into dementia research, so there is a real increase happening, and we have put £0.5bn into additional support for carers.”

A global concern

There are an estimated 44million people living with dementia globally.  And this figure is expected to treble by 2050 to 135million, causing concern that some countries simply won’t be able to cope.

As a result, Health Ministers from the G8 nations will get together during the summit to discuss the best ways to advance research and tackle this impending crisis.

There is currently no cure for dementia, and it is a disease that worsens with time, leaving sufferers dependent on carers.

The estimated global cost of dementia is $600 billion

Additional announcements for spending on dementia

Ahead of the G8 summit, there have been a number of other announcements:

  • The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has announced inspections into the care of dementia patients at 150 English institutions
  • The Alzheimer’s Society has committed to spending £100million on research over the next 10 years
  • The Medical Research Council has promised £50million to improve treatments and delay the disease’s progression
  • The “Dementia Consortium” has been set up, bringing together Alzheimer’s Research UK, MRC Technology, and two pharmaceutical companies in order to develop new drugs

All of which provides fresh hope that there will be improved support and treatment for dementia sufferers.

Hilary Evans, from Alzheimer’s Research UK, said: “It will be heartening to thousands of people living with dementia to see the UK leading the way in dementia research and know that scientists are fighting for them.  We boast some of the world’s leading scientists in dementia, and these announcements are a clear backing of their crucial work – this support must continue.

We hope this package of announcements will set a good example for other G8 nations to galvanize international research efforts.”.

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