World Alzheimer’s Day: Never too early, Never too old

It’s time to acknowledge the work of Counties staff working alongside people with Alzheimer’s.

Thursday 21 September is World Alzheimer’s Day. 

At Counties Manukau, we’re celebrating the fact that we have great services and programmes in place to help people with all types of dementia.

It is an opportunity to create awareness and provide education around the misconceptions associated with the condition, and to encourage supporting people living with dementia around the world.

The theme for 2023 is ‘Never too early, Never too old’ which centres around reducing an individual’s risk of developing dementia or prolonging its onset for as long as possible.

Middlemore’s Memory Team is known as Te Kahu Mahara. Mahara refers to memory - reflecting and “looking back at the good times”.

One of the service’s team members, Clinician Johanna O’Leary says:

“Dementia has been identified as one of Aotearoa’s most significant and growing ‘healthcare challenges’ and is thought to affect 80% of the population in some way.

“The prevalence is set to escalate to nearly 170,000 by 2050.  This increase is predicted to be disproportionate with higher rates in our Māori, Pasifika, and Asian populations.”

Te Kahu Mahara, was established mid-2013 to provide timely assessment and diagnosis and to support people with dementia and their whaanau.  

For Alzheimer’s patients the name captures the memory that they once had. This specialist, comprehensive assessment gives clients and their whānau a clearer understanding of their diagnosis and provides recommendations regarding living well with dementia.

A significant part of the work of Te Kahu Mahara, is providing a meeting place for people living with Alzheimer’s who need a sense of manaaki togetherness, where they can learn mobility skills, and korero together with health professionals and each other.


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