The article was originally posted on LinkedIn by Richard Juckes, Head of the Population Health Group.
In the lead up to #DementiaActionWeek next week, the AIHW has released updates to Dementia in Australia, a report focusing on people living with dementia, their carers, dementia hospitalisations, and deaths due to dementia. This year’s theme for Dementia Action Week is ‘A little support makes a big difference’.
Today’s report shows the number of Australians living with dementia has increased over the last 10 years, with numbers predicted to rise for many years to come as Australia’s population ages rapidly.
Dementia not only impacts those diagnosed, but also impacts family and friends of those living with dementia, as well the wider community. In addition to the wide range of health and aged care services required by people living with dementia, there are up to 337,000 unpaid carers of people with dementia in Australia. These are often loved ones who experience increased physical, mental, emotional and financial demands due to their caring role.
The care and support needed by a person living with dementia varies considerably from person to person, but they will require increasing care and support as their condition progresses. As a result of the support needed, people with dementia often require the services provided through permanent aged care. They make up over half (54%) of permanent aged care residents in Australia.
This year’s Dementia Action Week goals are to:
- Give a little support to a person living with dementia.
- Give a little support to a carer, friend or family member of a person living with dementia.
- Help healthcare professionals make their practice more dementia friendly.
In line with the Dementia Action Week theme, the report also includes case studies from Australians living with dementia and their carers. These stories provide a greater understanding of dementia, show the diverse experiences of people living with the condition and aim to help reduce stigma associated with dementia.
Through the Institute’s ongoing dementia monitoring and data development program, our goal is to provide accurate and timely evidence for policy makers, health professionals, researchers, and the community to better understand dementia within the Australian population and provide a little more support to those who need it.
More information about Dementia Action Week can be found on Dementia Australia's website.
Other recent AIHW reports on dementia can be found at the links below:
More information on dementia or support services can be found at:
- Dementia Australia website
- National Dementia Helpline: 1800 100 500 (a free and confidential service to discuss dementia and memory loss concerns for yourself or others)
- Dementia Behaviour Management Advisory Service: 1800 699 799 (if needing help to manage behaviour associated with dementia)