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Posted On: 22 October 2014 07:48 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:14 pm

World Innovation Summit for Health Tackles Dementia Through Global Engagement

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In order to tackle the growing prevalence of dementia, the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH), a global initiative of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), has appointed a Forum working group of global experts to discuss and find solutions to the problem.

Dementia is one of the major causes of disability and dependency among older people worldwide. The World Health Organisation estimates that 35.6 million people worldwide had dementia in 2010. This figure is projected to almost double to 65.7 million in 2030, and rise further to 115.4 million by 2050[1].

Mr Ellis Rubinstein, President of the New York Academy of Sciences, has been announced as Chair of the WISH Dementia Forum. Throughout his distinguished career, Mr Rubinstein has encouraged international collaboration among scientists. The expert working group on Dementia is tasked with producing an evidence-based report for policymakers, to be presented at the next WISH Summit in Qatar on 17-18 February 2015.

Mr Rubinstein will lead a multidisciplinary team of distinguished experts, drawn from around the world to research and provide recommendations about the prevention and treatment of dementia

In the coming months, the Forum will explore a wide range of dementia-related issues, including an overview of the current burden of dementia and projections for likely future scenarios; the current barriers and challenges to addressing dementia; and innovative solutions, including raising public awareness, care innovations, financial models and regulatory frameworks.

Mr Rubinstein said: “I am very pleased to be leading an expert group charged with developing evidence that will support new policies around dementia. We must rethink how we can accelerate best practices. I believe that together with my Forum partners, we will find the new evidence and perspectives to make a difference. Our ultimate goal: to help prevent and improve the quality of treatment for people with dementia. The Forum provides a unique opportunity to make a significant difference.”

Professor The Lord Darzi of Denham, Executive Chair of WISH and Director of the Institute of Global Health Innovation at Imperial College of London, said: “I am personally delighted to have a forum that focuses on the timely and growing issue of dementia. The exponential growth of this disease and the huge costs associated with treating it means dementia is a truly global priority. Together, we must look at ways of offering earlier diagnosis, better patient care and robust policy planning for more effective treatment. It is imperative that we do all we can to improve the care offered to this incredibly vulnerable section of our society.”

Dementia is one of seven research work streams to be presented at the Summit. The other WISH 2015 Forums include Communicating Complex Health Messages, Diabetes, Delivering Affordable Cancer Care, Patient Safety, Universal Health Coverage and Mental Health and Well-being in Children and Young People.

WISH inspires and diffuses healthcare innovation and best practice, remaining closely aligned to the vision and mission of QF to unlock human potential and serve to underscore Qatar’s pioneering role as an emerging centre for healthcare innovation.

For more information about the Forum, please visit