Alzheimer’s Disease Association becomes Dementia Singapore
The organisation will expand its focus from Alzheimer’s disease to other dementia-related conditions and will launch four dementia initiatives.
After more than 30 years as Alzheimer’s Disease Association (ADA), the organisation has transitioned to a company limited by guarantee as well as a non-profit and social service agency with a new corporate identity including a name change to Dementia Singapore.
Dementia Singapore Chairman Dr Ang Peng Chye, who founded ADA in 1990, said the new corporate name represents more accurately “our area of work as we have been frequently mistaken for supporting people only with Alzheimer’s disease”. He added: “In truth, we support people living with a wide spectrum of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease is just one of them.” Under the general term of dementia, there are several types of dementia which include Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, Lewy body dementia and frontotemporal dementia.
The organisation’s vision to build a dementia-inclusive society and its goals and commitment towards the dementia community remain unchanged, said Dementia Singapore CEO Jason Foo. He added: “We aim to continue tracking the ever-changing caregiving trends and needs of people with dementia, lend an expert voice to the dementia care landscape in Singapore, and cement our place in it. All our existing programmes and services, ongoing efforts in the community, and other upcoming initiatives are now more important than ever.”
According to the Well-being of the Singapore Elderly (WiSE) study led by the Institute of Mental Health in 2015, one in 10 people aged 60 and above may have dementia. Locally, there are an estimated 100,000 people in Singapore who have dementia, and that number is rising.
Commemorating this change, Singapore’s President Halimah Yacob said that with this increase over time, “it is imperative to plan ahead to improve our capability and capacity for dementia care, and introduce quality programmes to meet the growing demand. At the same time, we need to create a dementia-friendly society.”
Dementia Singapore, which is supported by National Council of Social Services and the Agency for Integrated Care, will expand its focus from Alzheimer’s Disease to other dementia-related conditions. This will include the launch of four dementia initiatives to be rolled out over the course of the year. These include a one-stop dementia resource portal, a dementia membership programme, a dementia-inclusive business toolkit, and a dementia-inclusive assisted living concept.
As Singapore continues our fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, President Halimah said the nation must make sure that no group is left behind. “People living with dementia and their caregivers would undoubtedly have faced more challenges than others during this period, such as increased social isolation and loneliness. Hence, I urge everyone to practise empathy and do our part to reach out to people living with dementia, such as lending a helping hand to seniors who are in need. With everyone’s support, I am confident that we are a step closer to becoming a dementia-friendly society.”