A milestone moment in Australia’s health policy was announced this afternoon as dementia was listed as Australia’s ninth National Health Priority by the Australian Government.
The long over-due decision will guarantee increases in government funding towards research and treatment of this disease, a move welcomed by COTA and the many Australian families impacted by dementia.
COTA Australia’s Chief Executive Ian Yates said the announcement would change lives.
“As a National Health Priority, dementia is now elevated to the same level of importance as other chronic diseases such as cancer and diabetes,” Mr Yates said.
“Until now, the disease has been grossly underfunded, despite an injection of Government funds earlier this year as part of their Living Longer. Living Better. aged care reforms.
“Today’s significant announcement will mean a renewed focus on better policy, greater funding, and more resources available to understand and tackle the nasty disease.
“It will also help remove the negative stigma attached to dementia, helping people to recognise that dementia is not a natural part of getting old – it is a chronic illness.
“Almost 300,000 Australians are currently living with dementia, but the devastating affects of this cruel disease reach even further, affecting the families and partners of sufferers, many who are often the primary carers.
“Increased funding into tackling dementia will help reshape the lives of those families who live with the harsh realities of dementia every single day.
“I congratulate the Australian Government for this important decision to name dementia as Australia’s ninth National Health Priority.
“I also congratulate Alzheimer’s Australia which has advocated for dementia to be listed as a National Health Priority for the past decade.”
Media contact: Ian Yates 0418 835 439, Anastasia Stomo 043 224 3389