- Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia and may contribute to 60 to 70% of cases, says the World Health Organization (WHO).
- Each year, World Alzheimer’s Day is celebrated with a theme. ‘Remember Me’ was the theme of 2017’s World Alzheimer’s Day, which gave focus to dementia.
- According to Alzheimer’s and Related Disorders Society of India (ARDSI), a voluntary organisation that helps manage Alzheimer’s and Dementia, 4.1 million people in India suffer from dementia and this number is set to double by 2030.
- Experts said despite the rising numbers, there is a lack of care facilities in the country to help manage dementia.
Prasad Bhide, the founder of Aaji Care Home Health Services and Aarambh, a 24/7 home and day care centre for the elderly, said caring for the elderly is an issue that is much larger than meets the eye. “Today, managing the elderly is becoming a challenge because every member of a family goes out to work. They have to rely on attendants and carers. The challenge for families with dementia sufferers becomes bigger since they have to find trained staff to take care of their dear ones,” he explained.
A former IT professional, Bhide started began these initiatives when his mother fell ill and he realised how difficult it is to find trained professionals in India to care for the elderly. “When I started Aaji Care Home Health Services in 2012 in Mumbai, I realised there was a dearth of professional care givers. I did a professional course and begun training people to care for the elderly,” he said.
Bhide has just started a day care centre in Hubli on 1st Feb 2018, he said, “Aarambh aims to provide various services to solve the challenges faced by senior citizens and families in Hubli and Dharwad, and help people with health issues like dementia, loneliness, post-hospitalisation recovery and many more problems. It will also provide rehabilitation for orthopaedic and neurological cases through its dedicated fully equipped physiotherapy centre. It can also provide respite care for families to attend events, vacations, tour without any anxiety.”
Aarambh was inaugurated by Dr C.B. Sattur, President of Indian Medical Association, Hubli branch and many others. “The idea is to reach as many people as we can and help them,” said Bhide.