Government and opposition commitments to improving the health and wellbeing of all Australians are being applauded by Dementia Australia, but the group says the needs of dementia patients are largely being ignored.
CEO Maree McCabe says the health focus in the federal election campaign thus far is to be commended, yet a glaring gap exists between the rhetoric and the needs of close to half a million people living with dementia.
“The 447,000 Australians living with dementia, their families and carers should not have to wait until April 2020 when the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety hands down its recommendations, when urgent action is required now to meet their needs,” she said.
“Twelve months is a long time for someone to be waiting to know more when you have a progressive, degenerative brain disease for which there is no cure.
“The federal election campaign presents the perfect opportunity for all parties and candidates to demonstrate their commitment to people living with dementia now.
“Dementia is the second leading cause of death in Australia and the leading cause of death for women.
“There are 1.5 million people in this country who care and provide support for people who are living with dementia, and the number is increasing.
“Dementia Australia calls on both the government and the opposition to put dementia on the public agenda now, as a priority, to create an inclusive future where all people impacted by dementia receive the care and support that they need and deserve.”