Dementia Action Week 2023: ‘Act Now for a Dementia-Friendly Future’
Ageing

Dementia Action Week 2023: ‘Act Now for a Dementia-Friendly Future’

In 2023, Dementia Action Week runs from the 18th to the 24th of September. This year Dementia Australia hopes to inspire people to ‘Act Now for a Dementia-Friendly Future’.  

Watching your loved one’s health decline is heartbreaking, no matter how fast or slow that decline takes place. On top of the sorrow of witnessing that transformation and, in some cases, that person becoming someone you don’t recognise, it can be incredibly painful to watch other people treat them differently because of their condition.

Sadly, this is the reality for a huge proportion of those who have a family member with dementia.

“Dementia Australia research shows 81 per cent of those with a loved one living with dementia felt that people in shops, cafes and restaurants treated people with dementia differently,” says the Dementia Australia website.

About Dementia Action Week 2023

This Dementia Action Week, Dementia Australia is encouraging people to work towards a more dementia-friendly future by taking simple actions.

This is especially important as approximately 60 per cent of people with dementia live in the community.

“A lack of knowledge and understanding of dementia may lead to people living with dementia experiencing stigma and discrimination in the community,” Dementia Australia says.

Dementia Action Week 2023

Current Snapshot of Dementia in Australia

According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s Dementia in Australia’s Summary Report 2022:

  • An estimated 401,300 Australians were living with dementia in 2022
    • Of those, about two-thirds were women (251,700), and one-third were men (149,600)
  • The number of Australians living with dementia is expected to rise to 849,300 by 2058.
  • Dementia is the 2nd leading cause of death in Australia and the leading cause of death for women
  • Dementia is the 2nd leading cause of disease burden in Australia

Statistics about Caring for people with dementia

The same report shares some startling figures about those caring for people with dementia:

  • There are an estimated 137,600 to 354,200 people providing consistent unpaid care for someone with dementia
  • Each week, 50 % of unpaid carers provide an average of 60+ hours of care
  • 1 in 3 informal/unpaid carers who also had jobs reduced their working hours to provide greater care

Dementia Australia says that in Australia in 2023, there are estimated to be more than 1.5 million people involved in the care of someone living with dementia.

Giving Day Supports Hospital Projects for Patients living with Dementia

We are fast approaching our third annual Giving Day for The Prince Charles Hospital.

Our kind supporters have helped us create some incredible initiatives within the hospital – namely in the Cognitive Assessment and Management (CAM) Unit, which houses patients living with dementia and other cognitive impairments.

One of those is Charlie’s Village – a specifically designed village-like community area within the outdoor space of the ward. Expected to be completed in October 2023, it will include a range of familiar facades, such as a hair salon, post office, bakery and general store.

Learn more about the Charlie’s Village vision here.

Within the same area in the CAM Unit, a sensory garden has already been planted thanks to the 2021 Giving Day funds. This garden aids in managing patient behaviour and moods as it offers distraction and provides joy and purpose for patients.

Published: September 14, 2023

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