Dementia doesn’t discriminate

2 October 2019|Lifestyle| Off Comments off on Dementia doesn’t discriminate|

MANAGER of client services for Dementia Australia in Tasmania David Rose has challenged Tasmanians to think differently about dementia by asking ‘Dementia doesn’t discriminate. Do you?’

During Dementia Action Week from 16 to 22 September, communities in Tasmania were encouraged to consider the effects of dementia and how discrimination impacts people of all ages, living with all forms of dementia, as well as their families and carers.

Mr Rose said discrimination can come in many forms, with people making assumptions about dementia.

“People make assumptions about a person’s capacity with dementia in that they might not understand, might not be able to make a decision about their own lives, might not be able to cook, might not be able to drive, or might not be able to manage their money” he said

“What we want to do is start a conversation around discrimination and the stigma that is attached to dementia.

“We want to work with the Tasmanian community to see if they can help us understand what dementia and discrimination means to them by completing a short survey.”

As the second leading cause of death in Australia, Mr Rose said there were about 11,000 people living with dementia in Tasmania, with an estimated 2,100 people in the Federal electorate of Clark.

“Although there’s no cure for dementia, there are risk reduction strategies that people can put in place, such as having a healthy lifestyle, doing exercise, a good diet, and having social interaction,” he said.

Mr Rose said there was a broad group of services within the Tasmanian community that supported people living with dementia, their families and their carers, including the Dementia Advisory Service, educational support, residential aged care and support groups for carers.

“We often find that people don’t know where to go, they don’t know what to do, they feel lost and confused when given a diagnosis, so we want people to know that Dementia Australia is here for them and we can support them through that journey,” he said.

“We’ve got great programs to be able to empower communities, educate and build capacity within the community, so there’s lots of areas where we can add value to helping people understand dementia and the issues associated with it.”

People can complete the survey to help create an informed understanding on how discrimination for people living with dementia occurs at https://reflectionsresearch.au1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_aavTLlmC0TUqw29.

For more information, visit www.dementia.org.au/dementia-action-week.

Caption: Manager of client services for Dementia Australia in Tasmania David Rose urged Tasmanians to think differently about dementia during Dementia Action Week.

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