Professor Welcomes Dementia Research Cash Boost
A LEADING expert has welcomed a significant increase in the dementia research budget as a "first step".
Professor Julie Williams, who has made a series of breakthroughs in identifying genes linked to the disease, said the money could open new avenues for research.
Prime Minister David Cameron yesterday announced dementia research funding will rise to pounds 66m by 2015 from the current level of pounds 26.6m.
It comes as a report by the Alzheimer's Society found three quarters of people in Wales feel that society is not geared up to deal with dementia.
Mr Cameron said: "One of the greatest challenges of our time is what I'd call the quiet crisis, one that steals lives and tears at the hearts of families, but that relative to its impact is hardly acknowledged.
"Dementia is simply a terrible disease. And it is a scandal that we as a country haven't kept pace with it. The level of diagnosis, understanding and awareness of dementia is shockingly low. It is as though we've been in collective denial."
Prof Williams, who is based at Cardiff University, said: "I'm delighted by this increase in funding - it's something we have been arguing for, for a number of years and it's good the Government now recognises we have a crisis. …