A leading NHS figure is hopeful that a cure for dementia will be a step closer within the next ten years.
Alistair Burns, the national clinical director for dementia, has said he is confident that a cure for dementia or a treatment to slow down its progression will be available within the next decade.
“Dementia is a progressive illness, so something that slows down the progression, even though in the public’s imagination it might not be a cure, in other words be able to bring people back to exactly where they were before, but something that slows down the progression, or halts the progression, would be very important indeed.”
Figures from the Alzheimer’s Society report that 850,000 people in the UK will suffer from dementia by 2015 with this figure set to rise to 1 million by 2025.
They also state “Delaying the onset of dementia by five years would reduce deaths directly attributable to dementia by 30,000 a year.”
With positive news towards tackling dementia last year, that the Government was to setup a £15 million fund to help finding new cures, Professor Burns’ outlook certainly gives hope to many.
“I would say in confidence that we are on target to develop something that will cure or significantly slow down dementia in the next 10 years, but these things are notoriously hard to predict.”