On World Alzheimer’s Day Swiss organisations have called for better framework conditions for the prevention, research and treatment of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. They also expressed alarm at the ever-growing number of cases.This content was published on September 21, 2021 - 12:01
About 146,500 people with dementia live in Switzerland, with most suffering from Alzheimer’s. This number will more than double in the next three decades, Alzheimer Switzerland, Swiss Memory Clinics and the Synapsis Foundation said in a statement. They predict some 315,000 people will live with dementia in Switzerland in 2050.
The current care and treatment system will not be able to cope with such an increase, they said. This is because the treatment and care of people with dementia is very expensive and places a heavy burden on their relatives. Today dementia generates annual costs of about CHF11.8 billion ($12.7 billion). Of this, relatives take on about CHF5.5 billion through unpaid care and nursing services.
The three national dementia organisations are therefore calling for greater efforts in research, prevention and the treatment and care of dementia patients.
Increased investment in research is necessary to discover the still largely unknown causes of dementia and to develop suitable approaches for diagnosis, treatment and care, they said. To this end, long-term funding programmes must be launched and reliable figures on dementia diseases must be collected.
There is also a need for rapid prevention and early detection programmes, as many dementia cases can be prevented and severe development can be delayed thanks to early detection. The organisations said diagnosis must be followed by dementia-specific counselling and support services for those affected.
The costs associated with care should also be recognised by law and financed accordingly, they said.
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