The Dementia 2020 challenge was launched in 2015, and has already made progress to increase diagnosis rates, recruit Dementia Friends, include dementia in general health check-ups, provide health care staff with dementia training, and invest millions in research.

A review of progress has identified opportunities for further progress – improving participation in research, improving public awareness of risk factors, and enhancing our understanding of early onset dementia.

I became a Dementia Friend because of personal experiences of family and friends affected by dementia. I have also hosted a Dementia Friends training session in my office in Aldridge.

The Dementia Friends programme is led by the Alzheimer’s Society and is a national social action movement to change the way people think, speak and act about dementia. It aims to transform the way the nation thinks, talks and acts about the condition. As part of the Prime Ministers challenge, Alzheimer’s Society hope to create four million Dementia Friends by 2020. Dementia Friends gives people an understanding of dementia and the small things they can do that can make a difference to people living with dementia.

With 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK and numbers set to rise to over one million by 2025, the Government are committing to make this the best country in the world for dementia care, support, research and awareness.