The WHO is getting ready with a global web-based tool.
The year 2050 may seem like it’s far in the distance but the World Health Organization is getting ready for it already.
“Nearly 10 million people develop dementia each year, 6 million of them in low- and middle-income countries,” says Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO. “The suffering that results is enormous. This is an alarm call: we must pay greater attention to this growing challenge and ensure that all people living with dementia, wherever they live, get the care that they need.”
Reported earlier this week by the global organization is the fact that the number of people living with dementia is expected to triple from 50 million to 152 million by 2050.
Simply put, the global population is aging and with it will come more age-related illness.
It may feel like a gloomy future, but some steps are being taken to try and prepare.
In response, the WHO has announced the release of a web-based platform called the Global Dementia Observatory. The tool will be used to track services available to people with dementia and their caregivers across the globe.
“This is the first global monitoring system for dementia that includes such a comprehensive range of data,” said Dr Tarun Dua, of WHO’s Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse. “The system will not only enable us to track progress, but just as importantly, to identify areas where future efforts are most needed.”
It’s estimated that the annual global cost of dementia is US$ 818 billion, equivalent to more than 1% of global gross domestic product.
According to the WHO, by 2030, that cost is expected to have more than doubled, to US$ 2 trillion.