Dementia is a clinical syndrome caused by neurodegeneration and characterised by progressive deterioration in cognitive ability and capacity for independent living.¹ The WHO estimates that around 50 million people have dementia worldwide, with nearly ten million new cases every year.2With the total number of people with dementia projected to rise to 82 million by 2030 and triple by 2050 to 152 million, the WHO recognises the condition as a growing global healthcare priority.² Due to the variety of symptoms associated with dementia and the life-limiting nature of the disease, a palliative approach to the care of these patients and their families is important. Traditionally, the only patients who had access to palliative care services were those with a diagnosis of cancer and nearing the end of their life. More recently, it has been recognised that palliative care is also important for patients with non-malignant diseases³ and should be considered as an integral part of a patient’s management from the time of diagnosis of a life-limiting illness; however, patients with non-malignant diseases still often have inequitable access to palliative care⁴.
|Journal||European Journal of Palliative Care|
|Publication status||Published (in print/issue) - 26 May 2018|