Dementia Worldwide

The global impact of dementia

Key facts

  • Every 3 seconds, someone in the world develops dementia.
  • There were an estimated 50 million people worldwide living with dementia in 2017. This number will almost double every 20 years, reaching 75 million in 2030 and 131.5 million in 2050.
  • Much of the increase will be in low and middle income countries. Already 58% of people with dementia live in low and middle income countries, but by 2050 this will rise to 68%. 

Source: Alzheimer's Disease International

Alzheimers NZ is a member of Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI), the federation of Alzheimer’s organisations worldwide. Find out more here

World Alzheimer Reports

Every year during World Alzheimers Month, Alzheimers Disease International (ADI) releases a World Alzheimer Report. Alongside this, ADI also produce a number of reports on a range of different topics.

View the reports

Other reports and policy briefs

Alzheimer's Disease International also provides a number of reports, policy briefs and publications to advance understanding of dementia, as well as supporting research.

View the reports

World Health Organization (WHO)

The Global action plan on the public health response to dementia 2017-2025 was adopted by WHO Member States at the 70th World Health Assembly. The global plan provides a comprehensive blueprint for action and sets targets across seven areas.

In May 2019, on the second anniversary of WHO’s adoption of Global action plan, ADI updated their report, From plan to impacton the progress. In the last two years only two countries have created national dementia plans or frameworks, meaning at the current rate the 2025 target will not be reached.

Dementia - World Health Organization


Alzheimer's Disease International (ADI) hold a number of webinars, bringing together experts from around the world. Click here to watch the recordings. 


The Lancet

The report, Dementia prevention, intervention, and care, aims to review the best available evidence and produce recommendations on how to best manage, or even prevent, the dementia epidemic worldwide.

Another report, the Global, regional, and national burden of Alzheimer's disease and other dementias presents estimates of dementia-related deaths, prevalence, quality of life, measures, and risk factors, with the aim of documenting global patterns and providing data for research, and to guide a wide range of public health investments. 

International Federation on Ageing (IFA)

The International Federation on Ageing is an international non-governmental organization with a membership base comprising government, NGOs, academics, industry, and individuals in 80 countries. The Copenhagen Summit on Cognitive Reserve Consesus Statement can be found here. 

OECD Report

This report reveals that fewer than 40% of the 34 OECD countries (of which NZ is a member) are able to estimate dementia diagnosis rates nationally. It provides advice on diagnosis, strengthening access to care services and the measurement of the quality and outcomes of dementia care.

Click here to read the report

World Dementia Council reports

These two report from the World Dementia Council examine the global evidence base for dementia friendly initiatives. Dementia friendly is a concept that has developed into a worldwide “movement” with a many initiatives happening across the globe.

It’s a concept that we are also promoting at Alzheimers NZ so we look forward to learning more about the results of the Council’s work.

Report 1 - Defining dementia-friendly intiatives
Report 2 - Impacts of dementia-friendly intiatives 

Dementia Friendly Communities

The framework of dementia friendly has the power to change the way we think about living with dementia. These resources from ADI set out the principles to guide the development of dementia friendly communities and showcase examples of dementia friendly initiatives around the world.

Dementia Friendly Communities resources

ADI Conferences

Alzheimer's Disease International (ADI) holds international conferences each year, working with their member associations around the world. Alzheimers NZ is a member of ADI. These conferences are a unique opportunity to bring together people from all around the world with an interest in dementia, to share and learn from one another.

Read more

Dementia in the Asia Pacific Region

The report updates dementia prevalence data for the area, estimating that the number of people with dementia in the region will increase from 23 million in 2015 to almost 71 million by 2050. The report also includes profiles of each of ADI's member associations in the region and their circumstances.

Download the report (pdf)

Human Rights for people with dementia

Dementia Alliance International has introduced a new booklet The Human Rights of People Living with Dementia: from Rhetoric to Reality.

Download the booklet (pdf)

More information

For recent global information about dementia visit Dementia Alliance International and Alzheimers Disease International