National dementia strategy

On June 22, 2017, Canada became the 30th country to launch a national dementia strategy. The passing of Bill C-233, An Act respecting a national strategy for Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, addresses the overwhelming scale, impact and cost of dementia in Canada.

What is a national dementia strategy and why do we need one?

Canadians repeatedly tell us they want better integrated dementia care and support. According to a recent Nanos survey, 83% of Canadians reported they believe Canada needs a national dementia plan. We need a comprehensive, workable national dementia strategy that dramatically improves the lives of people living with dementia.

By 2031, 937,000 Canadians will have dementia. That’s less than 20 years away. A national dementia strategy will help overcome the growing crisis in dementia care by coordinating all national efforts in Alzheimer's research, clinical care, institutional, and home- and community-based programs.

Canada trails the United States, France, Australia, the UK, and other countries that already have strategies.

The principles of strong research, caregivers, care providers, early intervention and a continuum of care are common in almost all jurisdictions. These principles, based on models from other countries and some Canadian provinces, will help guide Canada in constructing its own national dementia strategy.

The Alzheimer Society is proposing a Canadian solution to curb the soaring economic, social and personal impact of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias. We recommend a Canadian Alzheimer's Disease and Dementia Partnership be created as a government funded arms-length entity that would facilitate the development and implementation of a fully comprehensive national dementia strategy.

Provincially-designed policies and programs have led to gaps in how dementia is dealt with across the country. National guidelines would ensure that all Canadians reap the benefits of policies and programs related to dementia.

Additional resources

Frequently asked questions around a national dementia strategy

Bill C-233: What’s that all about?

Business case for a national dementia strategy compelling, reposted with permission from The Hill Times (March 2015)

Last Updated: 11/08/2017