Advocating for better treatment of individuals with dementia

This post is from Dementia Alliance International (DAI), who promote education and awareness about dementia. The original text may be slightly modified for this post.

Kate Swaffer’s keynote speech highlights some of the most relevant issues in dementia care and living with dementia:  the need to address the individual, not just their symptoms; human rights issues; balance in dementia research funding; rehabilitation and palliative care in dementia care plans; better diagnostics; delaying institutionalization; inclusion; breaking stigma – I mean, wow, she really gave a great speech! She also touches on two other important topics:  psychosocial stimulation and maintaining work and contribution to society, mentioning her own experience and drive to continue contribution through advocacy.

She is a champion in breaking down stigma and raising awareness for people with dementia, particularly young-onset dementia (before age 65). Head on over to her website, have a read, and sign up to follow her.

This text comes from the DAI webpage, you can access the original article in full by clicking on the title below or the link towards the bottom of this post.

Dementia Alliance International Update on the First World Health Organization Ministerial Conference on Dementia

It was significant and pleasing for our members that we were represented at this very important World Health Organization Ministerial Conference on Dementia. DAI Co-chair Kate Swaffer gave a key note speech on Day 2, and two DAI members, Hilary Oxford from the UK, also a member of the World Dementia Council, and Michael Ellenbogen from the USA were part of a panel “The People’s Perspectives” at the end of Day 1.

Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) has reported on the event here, and I have downloaded the webcast of the DAI presentation, as well as added the original transcript of the speech, which is not 100% the same as the video recording, due to a little bit of ad libbing and the challenges of dementia getting in the way of reading notes well these days! There is also a power point presentation for those of you who are interested.

Some highlights:

Alzheimer’s societies and associations around the world and people with dementia need to use the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities to benefit people living with dementia. Alzheimer’s Disease International, in their 2012 report, quite rightly highlighted this.

It is our human right not only to person-centered care and ethical care plans, which currently we are not often offered until we need palliation – if then, in some countries – but to a system and world that stops discriminating against us. The current system of care is unpalatable and unethical, and we deserve much more.

Read the rest of the article and Kate’s speech here.

The full notes are also available to print here WHO Ministerial Conference on Dementia_17 March 2015_Kate Swaffer

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One thought on “Advocating for better treatment of individuals with dementia

  1. Pingback: The World Health Organization and the Global Alzheimer’s Movement | Doctor Dementia and the Dementia Adventure

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