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New Minister of Health welcomed by Alzheimers NZ

Media release – 21 November 2008

New Minister of Health welcomed by Alzheimers New Zealand

The appointment of Tony Ryall as the new Minister of Health is encouraging news for all those living with dementia, according to Alzheimers New Zealand National Director Lucille Ogston.

“Mr Ryall has expressed interest in meeting with people with dementia to find out first hand what it is like to live with this debilitating condition. We look forward to working closely with him and the rest of his health team over the next three years.”

Ogston says it’s important that the new Government takes on board the facts surrounding dementia and provide the necessary services to those living with the disease both now and in the future.

“We want to see dementia made a health priority. According to the 2008 Dementia Economic Impact Report, New Zealand has an estimated 40,746 people living with dementia and that number will increase 75 per cent by 2030. Therefore it’s vital that this Government and Minister Ryall take some real action and start planning for the future.”

Ogston says Alzheimers New Zealand would like to see an increase in funding and services for people with dementia and those who care for them, increased access to subsidised medications and more funding for dementia research.

“It’s important that issues around medications and dementia research and of course funding are addressed by this Government.

“We will be working alongside the Minister to ensure people living with dementia are well represented in the decision making process.”


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