Canada has a crisis looming in the number of people afflicted with dementia illnesses. It is a huge cost for healthcare, for budgets and a big challenge to caregivers.
The number of Canadians with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias is rising sharply
According to a new study commissioned by the Alzheimer Society of Canada, the number of Canadians living with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias now stands at 747,000 and will double to 1.4 million by 2031.
Canada’s health-care system is ill-equipped to deal with the staggering costs
Today, the combined direct (medical) and indirect (lost earnings) costs of dementia total $33 billion per year. By 2040, this figure will skyrocket to $293 billion per year.
Pressures on family caregivers are mounting In 2011, family caregivers spent 444 million unpaid hours per year looking after someone with dementia, representing $11 billion in lost income and 227,760 lost full-time equivalent employees in the work force. By 2040, they will be devoting a staggering 1.2 billion unpaid hours per year.
Canada needs a dementia plan – now. My bill supports The Alzheimer Society's call for a national dementia plan to help reduce the burden of dementia and to support more people with the disease across Canada. Health-care providers, politicians, and policy makers need to focus on:
- · Increasing funding for research into all aspects of dementia
- · Promoting earlier diagnosis and intervention
- · Strengthening the integration of primary, home and community care
- · Enhancing skills and training of the dementia workforce
- · Recognizing the needs and improving supports for caregivers
I know this story. He and his family had to deal with his mom gradually getting worse and worse with Alzheimer's. Claude, working with advocates, has introduced a bill calling on Canada to create a National Dementia Strategy.To learn more about the strategy, the bill and what you can do to help get it passed, click on the links below.
There are 3 easy things that you can do to support the National Dementia Strategy
- Write or email the Prime Minister and Health Minister. Download the sample letter at the bottom of the page and send or email it to Prime Minister Harper or the Minister of Health
- Download a House of Commons petition and gather
signatures. Petition your MP to support the National Dementia Strategy. The petition is downloadable in both French and English. Your petition must have a minimum of 25 signatures.
- Have Your Municipality Pass a Resolution!