September 25, 2021

Discussing the ‘Silent Epidemic’ of Alzheimer’s Disease

On 23 September,  EU40, the Financial Times, and Biogen held a virtual webinar on the prevalent issues surrounding Alzheimer’s Disease still in 2021. The speakers considered the fundamental changes needed to increase awareness of Alzheimer’s disease, improve diagnosis rates and enhance options for care.

Karolinska Institutet’s Miia Kivipelto said that “Alzheimer’s is a global challenge. Global  collaboration & solutions need to be found. Using  digital biomarkers and implementing research  findings, and the need to include patients in the  research.”

Biogen’s Alessandro Marcuzzi  remarked that “Often, there is delay in patient journey intervention.  Through knowledge & education for patients &  caregivers, we can talk about nutrition & lifestyle, and  preventative measures for early detection of  Alzheimer’s Disease.”

Head of Health division at the OECD, Francesca Colombo pointed out that dementia is a leading cause of disability in the aging population – but life of people living with dementia still can be improved. There have been lots of successes in the past few years especially in the increase of funding & awareness, but there still exists an uphill battle for diagnosis. 

Dominik Isler from “Demetia Meets” spoke on a personal level – with his family members who were diagnosed with dementia, he argued that as a society we must learn as we did with cancer. Society must deal with the reality of Alzheimers Disease and embrace those patients who live with it.

On behalf of the European Commission, Donata Meroni stressed the impact of of COVID-19: Social distancing & lockdown measures had significant impact on those living with dementia, disproportionately impacting mental health, and reiterated the important ever-present need for support and care.

The recorded discussion is available on demand here.

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