Indigenous Dementia Project
The Indigenous Dementia Project highlighted the research conducted in the Northern Territory on
issues surrounding dementia. The project identified unmet needs, service gaps and issues in the
Northern Territory for Indigenous peoples living with dementia, their families and carers.
The main thrust of the consultant’s report shows that there are many barriers to overcome if
dementia is to be given a higher priority among the many health issues pressing upon Indigenous
communities. The long list of negatives in the report relating to service delivery and geography is
not in doubt.
Importantly a number of strategies have been identified as a positive approach, in promoting a
better understanding of dementia among Indigenous communities, as well as improve service
1. Awareness – It was acknowledged by Alzheimer’s Australia that unless community awareness
was raised, the returns from training and other initiatives were likely to be that much lower.
2. Assessment Tool - There is a recognised need for a simple assessment tool that can be used
by relatively unskilled workers to recognise dementia in communities. At a national level,
Alzheimer’s Australia is looking at ways of generating interest through one of the universities,
in the development of an assessment tool. One option is to look at the tool based on work of
by Dr Martin Prince, ADI, London.
3. Education - There was considerable scope for education and training initiatives. These
initiatives need to have an emphasis on Health and Community Care workers as well as
Aboriginal health workers.
4. Representation – Alzheimer’s Australia to be represented at key Indigenous aged care and
mental health conferences during 2003/2004. These conferences will be a good opportunity to
network with Indigenous service providers, improve understanding of Indigenous issues, and
improve marketing of the work of Alzheimer’s Australia.
For further information contact Marianne Fitch Executive Director Alzheimer’s Australia NT
on 89485228. To obtain a copy of The Indigenous Dementia Report please go to
www.alzheimers.org.au go to NT on map of Australia.
Alzheimer’s Australia NT Unit 1, 18 Bauhinia Street Telephone 08 8948 5228 Dementia Helpline
Nightcliff NT 0810 Facsimile 08 8948 5229 1800 639 331
PO Box 515 Email firstname.lastname@example.org The Alzheimer’s Association
Nightcliff NT 0814 of the Northern Territory Inc
ABN 34 030 043 531