National Dementia Strategy

Alzheimers New Zealand was delighted to launch the National Dementia Strategy at a special Parliamentary function as part of our People, Policy, Partnership Conference on Thursday 6 May 2010.

The launch was attended by Minister of Health Tony Ryall, who acknowledged dementia as a key issue for the future of New Zealand and told the audience the government was committed to working to ensure those with the disease received quality services.

Also in attendance were Alzheimers New Zealand staff and board members, as well as other conference delegates throughout the health and social services sector. Former Alzheimers New Zealand board chairperson Eileen Smith spoke about her journey as carer to her husband Ray, while Nigel Wynn, Alzheimers New Zealand board member, spoke about life with dementia and how the Strategy will impact himself and his family. Peter Baume, the former Australian Health Minister instrumental in helping to make dementia a health care priority in his own country, appealed to Minister Ryall to make dementia a health care priority in New Zealand.

You can read Minister Ryall's full speech here.  (

Thank you to all who contributed to this Strategy. We consulted widely throughout the private and Government health sectors, the not-for-profit and community sector as well as other relevant organisations and individuals. We also sought the feedback of people with dementia and their families to give us the direction we needed to ensure their needs are taken care of.

The Strategy comprises of eight strategic goals, accompanied by action points.

1) Recognise dementia as a national health priority
2) Increase public awareness of dementia
3) Provide access to affordable and appropriate medication
4) Improve early diagnosis and management of dementia
5) Provide appropriate services to all people with dementia
6) Provide support to family/whanau/carers of people with dementia
7) Develop the workforce to deliver quality dementia care
8) Increase dementia research and the evaluation of dementia practices

We look forward to keeping you informed about progress made on the National Dementia Strategy.

Please click here to view a copy of the National Dementia Strategy.

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