Press Release

Minister McEntee opens two day 9th International Dementia Conference

The Minister for Mental Health and Older People, Helen McEntee TD, today officially opened the 9th International Dementia Conference in the Citywest Hotel, Dublin. The two day conference is Ireland’s biggest annual dementia event, bringing together experts from Ireland and abroad, and showcasing best practice in Ireland.

Speaking at the opening of the Conference, Minister McEntee said: “Each year 4,000 people in Ireland are diagnosed with dementia – that’s 11 people every day. Currently there are approximately 55,000 people living with dementia in the Republic of Ireland. Dementia prevalence is set to increase in line with our ageing population, underscoring the need for us as a nation to acknowledge and understand the condition and its impact on individuals and society as a whole.

The Government published Ireland’s first National Dementia Strategy in December 2014, with the objective of increasing awareness, ensuring early diagnosis and intervention and developing enhanced community based services. The Strategy contains a range of actions to meet those objectives, including upskilling GPs in dementia diagnosis, the undertaking of an awareness campaign called “Dementia Understand Together” and the dementia specific training and education programmes .

The Minister concluded by saying that “With the right understanding and supports where needed, life is far from over for a person diagnosed with a dementia. Today’s conference will allow healthcare professionals and carers to keep abreast of new knowledge, research and innovative initiatives affecting people with dementia, and will play its part in ensuring that people with dementia can continue to live well in their own homes and communities for a long time”.