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Intouch : In Touch Issue 77
Contents The Board has had a quiet quarter but the organisation has been humming along – a tribute to John Watkins and to an excellent senior management team. It is good if things are quiet; policies are in place properly, investments are being watched closely, the achievement of our strategic plan is being followed and things generally are on track. Productivity Commission The biggest thing in the quarter was the release of the Draft Report of the Productivity Commission on Ageing in Australia (Caring for Older Australians). It was generally welcome but we and the entire dementia community were disappointed that it did not specifically mention ‘our’ disease and did not deal with the coming tsunami of dementia in Australia. Alzheimer’s Australia NSW (AlzNSW) has met with two Commissioners, Robert Fitzgerald and Sue Macri, to put forward our concerns, and subsequently invited both commissioners to come to an open forum hosted by AlzNSW. The government has agreed that the final report will not come in until mid- year, which is too late for the Budget this year but in time for the next. Read more about the briefing on page 8. Parkinson lunch The lunch at which Sir Michael Parkinson spoke was a beauty. It was well organised and went very well. Sir Michael Parkinson gave a wonderful speech – memorable for so many of us. The publicity from that event was considerable and was all positive. Turn to page 10 to read more and spot yourself in photos. New publication Professor Colleen Cartwright has produced for Alzheimer’s Australia an excellent document on advanced health-care directives and enduring powers of attorney. Everyone should complete such documents before they become ill and should then update them with a signed letter approximately every two years. The booklet prepared by Colleen Cartwright tells people how to proceed and is available on request. See page 7 for more information on the publication. A different type of research Last year we were able to give NSW Members of Parliament a profile of what the coming wave of dementia might mean for their own constituencies, and much of the information we provided made its way into local media. The information was extracted by us from the Access Economics Report. For example, we were able to show that in the seat of Camden, the incidence of dementia is set to increase eight times by mid-century. We will soon give the same data to new MPs. This is different to pure medical research. Medical research is very ably carried out in the three Dementia Collaborative Research Centres (DCRCs) that the government funds and we are pleased to support. The research we do is necessary politically and will be continued. You can read more about the report and media coverage on page 9. Support groups We are grateful for the support groups that exist in many parts of the state. They enable carers and patients to discuss and push for what is needed in their geographical area. We have become aware that need for general dementia services is increasing most rapidly in the Tweed, on the Central Coast and in the Illawarra, and know that too many people are not getting service in western and south-western Sydney. We intend to support the groups that do exist and push for new groups in other areas. We want a better availability of services, especially in areas where people are going to retire and where dementia is going to be increasing rapidly. The Hon. Prof. Peter Baume AC Chairman Chairman’s message 2 Chairman’s message 3 CEO’s message 4 News Productivity Commission briefing, new Port Macquarie office, Bang the Drum winners and more 9 Care places needed New report predicts a 279,000 nationwide shortfall of care places by 2050 10 Stand on dignity Sir Michael Parkinson calls for dignity in care at AlzNSW fundraising lunch 12 Courses Workshops for carers, health professionals and group leaders 13 AlzNSW services How can we help you? 14 Carer support groups Support around the state 15 Memory Vans’ travels The AlzNSW Memory Vans promote brain health 16 Fundraising Upcoming events 18 A day in the life of... the AlzNSW Policy and Information Unit 19 In memoriam 20 Library New on the bookshelf 2 In touch Winter 2011 www.alzheimers.org.au
In Touch Issue 76
In Touch Issue 78