Top Stories : Statement by Dr. Sirinthorn Chansirikarnjana at the First Ministerial Conference on Global Action Against Dementia, WHO News

Top Stories : Statement by Dr. Sirinthorn Chansirikarnjana at the First Ministerial Conference on Global Action Against Dementia, WHO

Statement of Thailand

delivered by Dr. Sirinthorn Chansirikarnjana,

Head of Delegation

at the First Ministerial Conference on Global Action Against Dementia

on 17 March 2015

WHO Headquarters, Geneva




                   Good morning ladies and gentlemen, I wish to introduce myself. I am Dr. Sirinthorn, a geriatrician and the President of AD and Related Disorder Association Thailand.

                   As a geriatrician inspired by having AD in the family and had the opportunity to set up the association for helping caregivers under the umbrella of ADI for more than 10 years, I have three things to share:

                   Firstly, the raising of awareness at the present time is not too difficult. I found that movies could help a lot especially in educated and urbanized people. The Thai Alzheimer's Association has already arranged two short film competitions. Last year, we asked four successful movie directors to produce a short film about dementia as charity work. They are going to broadcast these movies in the country this coming September, in World Alzheimer's month.

                   However, there are also many good Hollywood films about AD and dementia, the latest being Still Alice, the others being Iris, Murdock, Armour. These are the very good resources as a teaching method. Is it possible that someone here make these films available for education and raising awareness of dementia? This will also help in teaching doctors and healthcare professionals.

                   Secondly, the most difficult part of setting up comprehensive dementia care is with regards to doctors. It's very difficult to look after people with dementia, from primary care physicians to professional ones. We have arranged training programmes for doctors and nurses every year but we don't have enough qualified doctors. I have looked around for advice about doctor training both in professional and attitude development. If any colleagues have good training programmes, please kindly inform my team.

                   Thirdly, the support for persons living with dementia need a lot of work in social care. In my country, the Ministry of Public Health and Ministry of Social Welfare work separately. It would be wonderful if the organizing committee could arrange something like today’s meeting to inform people working in social welfare of the importance of their work for improving the quality of life of person with dementia and their families.

                   Working on dementia in Thailand nowadays is not as hard as it was in the past. The government and people know and understand dementia better. And dementia care will be on top of Long Term Care policy for older persons very soon. Thank you for convening this meeting which I believe can accelerate the action on governmental level. Thank you very much.