Reena applauds the inclusion of the intellectually disabled in the national Dementia Strategy
this week, the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health announced
the release of A Dementia Strategy for Canada: Together We Aspire.
This first national Dementia Strategy focuses on preventing dementia, advancing
therapies, and finding a cure, as well as improving the quality of life of
people living with dementia and caregivers. Budget proposed for 2019 is $50 million to help advance the Strategy.
Group of Charities would like to thank the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor,
Minister of Health, (@CDNMinHealth)
and Honourable Filomena Tassi (@MinofSeniors)
Minister of Seniors and the Government of Canada for their contributions launching Canada’s
first national Dementia Strategy.
We have been looking forward to a Canadian Dementia Strategy for
some time and are so pleased that the time has come for Canada to develop a
plan for this most important issue. When we heard the announcement that
this work was beginning, we became immediately engaged in the process to inform
and Dementia Research
For the last twenty years Reena has been an industry leader,
creating the Ontario Partnership on Aging
and Developmental Disabilities. This
partnership promotes collaboration across sectors through education and sharing
information – encouraging unique models of support and care. A key area
of this work has been on dementia and developmental disabilities.
Reena has worked with experts, Dr. Nancy Jokinen, Associate Professor, UNBC and
Leslie Udell from Winnipeg (Winnserve) to create the Canadian Consortium on Dementia and Developmental Disability.
One of the key actions of this group is to work with our U.S. partners, National
Task Group on Dementia and Developmental Disabilities. They created a
curriculum and our goal is to create a Canadian version, and deliver this
across Canada. This year we piloted 3 sessions across Canada – Thornhill,
Winnipeg and Victoria.
As a result of these three sessions we now have a group of connected
leaders, providing a growing network of support and learning.
Stemp from Reena and Dr. Nancy Jokinen took part in the National Dementia
conference in 2018 and were able to help provide information to the
participants and members of the Ministerial Advisory Board on Dementia on the
unique issues and needs of those with dementia and developmental
disabilities. After the conference both were approached by the Canadian
Academy of Health Sciences indicating they did not have knowledge
on dementia and developmental disabilities.
provided a document with research citations and then Dr. Nancy Jokinen was
commissioned to provide a report, Improving
the Quality of Life and Care of Persons Living with Dementia and Their Caregivers,
(see Appendix G of this report link –https://www.cahs-acss.ca/improving-the-quality-of-life-and-care-of-persons-living-with-dementia-and-their-caregivers).
believe that these actions and the advocacy of all those connected to the
Canadian Consortium on Dementia and Developmental Disabilities provided the
impetus to the inclusion of those with developmental disabilities in Canada’s
National Dementia Strategy.
Dementia – Background Information
than 419,000 Canadians aged 65 years and older diagnosed with dementia in
Canada. As population ages, more and more Canadians are affected, and
two-thirds of those diagnosed are women. Dementia affects not only the
person living with dementia, but also their families, caregivers, and
The new strategy places emphasis on those groups who are at a
higher risk of dementia as well as those who face barriers to equitable care.
These groups include but are not limited to Indigenous peoples, individuals
with intellectual disabilities, individuals with existing health issues such as
hypertension and type 2 diabetes, older adults, women, ethnic and cultural
minority communities, LGBTQ2 individuals, official language minority
communities, rural and remote communities, and those with young onset dementia.
Want to learn more about how this new strategy will affect people with dementia?
Want to have
access to Reena’s 20-year professional research and help your community?
Contact – Sandy Stemp, Reena’s C.O.O.