Alzheimer’s Disease International just published a paper, Policy Brief for Heads of Government: The Global Impact of Dementia 2013–2050, which has received widespread attention in the worldwide news. This is an important paper and I urge you to read it. You can get a free copy here: http://www.alz.co.uk/research/GlobalImpactDementia2013.pdf.
I have posted some highlights below.
Original Findings by ADI 2009
Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) published global prevalence data on dementia in the World Alzheimer Report 2009 based on a systematic review of 154 studies conducted worldwide, and United Nations population projections through to the year 2050. We estimated 36 million people with dementia in 2010, nearly doubling every 20 years to 66 million by 2030 and to 115 million by 2050.
The key findings in that report were:
- 58% of those affected lived in low and middle income countries, underlining the high impact of the condition in those regions, where awareness is low, health and social care are poorly developed and social protection is limited.
- Population ageing is the main driver of projected increases.
- We assumed that age-specific prevalence would remain constant. This assumption is challenged by recent evidence suggesting a modest recent decline in dementia prevalence in some higher income countries (HIC), but an increase in prevalence in China, likely linked to recent changes in population health, particularly exposure to cardiovascular risk factors.
- Since population ageing is occurring at an unprecedentedly fast rate in middle income countries, the bulk of the increase in numbers through to 2050 will occur in those regions. By 2050 71% of those with dementia would be living in what are currently lower and middle-income countries (LMIC).
Updated Findings by ADI 2013
The prevalences of dementia estimated from the recent more comprehensive review and meta analysis of China studies 3 and our own metaanalysis of studies from sub-Saharan Africa were substantially higher than those used in the 2009 World Alzheimer Report. Age-standardised to a standard West European population, prevalence for East Asia increased from 4.98% to 6.99% and in the sub-Saharan African regions from a range of 2.07% to 4.00%, to 4.76% (Figure 1).
The number of people living with dementia worldwide in 2013 is estimated at 44.35 million, reaching 75.62 million in 2030 and 135.46 million in 2050 (Figure 2). The updated estimates are higher than our original estimates reported in the 2009 World Alzheimer Report, by 15% in 2030, and by 17% in 2050.
Policy Brief for Heads of Government: The Global Impact of Dementia 2013–2050
Published by Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI), London. December 2013
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