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Dementia Information

Dementia is a general term that refers to a group of brain diseases characterised by severe and progressive cognitive decline that interferes with normal daily functioning. These deficits may include severe memory loss, mental confusion, language difficulties, mood variations and personality changes. It is estimated that more than 6 million people residing in EU member states have dementia. In Malta, more than 4,500 individuals have dementia, a figure that is expected to double by the next 25 years. 

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia accounting for around 60 per cent of all dementia cases. Other forms of dementia include vascular dementia, Lewy-body dementia, fronto-temporal dementia and dementia secondary to disease.

Age is the most important risk factor in developing dementia. The condition affects about 1.5 per cent of individuals aged 65 years and doubles every four years to reach 30 per cent at 80 years. It is the major predictor of morbidity and mortality in the elderly and is associated with a significant increase in healthcare utilisation.

On the 15th July 2014, Parliamentary Secretary Hon. Dr. Franco Mercieca appointed Dr. Charles Scerri, Researcher and lecturer at the University of Malta as National Focal Point for dimentia. This will enhance the aim of creating a better strategy for people suffering from dementia. The strategy shall be completed by the end of this year.

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