Alzheimer’s Research UK said the government must increase funding for dementia research if its bold approach to tackling dementia is to be successful.
Sajid Javid, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, said he has an ambitious plan to tackle the dementia crisis, which will be unveiled later this year when the government publishes its Dementia Strategy.
Susan Mitchell, Head of Policy at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:
“It is encouraging to see the Secretary of State announce a more ambitious approach to dementia as an acknowledgement of the scale of the challenge – but with no disease modifying treatments available, we need to see funding for research to match this ambition and achieve long term solutions.
Given the government has so far not delivered on its 2019 ’Dementia Moonshot’ pledge to double funding for dementia research we need to see today’s commitments followed up by clear plans with accountability and suitable funding to enable delivery.
“We’ve called for the creation of a Dementia Medicines Taskforce to address the urgent need for new treatments for people with dementia. Such a taskforce could turbocharge efforts to develop and deliver life-changing treatments but would need clear leadership from government to co-ordinate this activity.
“The government’s existing target of diagnosing two thirds of people with dementia has not been ambitious enough so we welcome a stronger focus on improving the timeliness and accuracy of diagnosis. We must invest in research to improve the way we diagnose diseases like Alzheimer’s and ensure that innovations in diagnosis make their way into the health service as quickly as possible.
“We are pleased to see the Secretary of State highlight the importance of preventing dementia through risk reduction. With up to 40% of dementia cases potentially preventable we must see the government embed approaches to good brain health across all policy areas to help more people reduce their risk of dementia.”