About this programme

The ZonMw dementia research and innovation programme ‘Memorabel’ is part of the 'Deltaplan for Dementia'.

Managing the problem of dementia

Dementia represents a major, and growing, challenge for society. As a result of demographic ageing, the number of people with dementia is set to rise sharply in the near future. A recent World Health Organization report estimates the global number of dementia sufferers at 35.6 million. By 2030 the number of dementia patients probably will have doubled, and by 2050 more than tripled. One in five people develop dementia. Dementia is the third largest cause of death in the Netherlands.

We need a long-term national strategy to ensure the burden of caring for dementia patients remains manageable in the future. We are confronted with a looming shortage of care workers. Many dementia sufferers are supported by informal carers, but the pressure on them is enormous. The costs are also high. Dementia is the most expensive disease in the Netherlands, taking up more than 5% of the entire healthcare budget.

Deltaplan for Dementia

The Deltaplan for Dementia is a nationwide public-private initiative that aims to tackle and manage the growing problem of dementia, by utilising the Netherlands’ innovative strengths in science, product innovation and healthcare (including healthcare policy). The Deltaplan focuses on the Netherlands, but it also ties in well with the latest international developments and insights. Partners from both the public and private sectors have now committed themselves to support the plan.

The Deltaplan for Dementia consists of 3 elements.

  1. Dementia Research and Innovation Programme: Memorabel
    An eight-year programme focusing on aetiology, diagnosis, prevention and treatment, and efficient care.
  2. Improvement of Health Care
    The Deltaplan aims to ensure that patients of today can continue to live at home as long as possible, supported by appropriate professional and informal care.
  3. Social innovation
    The Deltaplan also aims to stimulate a society that is more dementia friendly


Memorabel - Caring for patients today and in the future

The goal of ‘Memorabel’ is to gather knowledge that might in the long term help to stem the growth in the number of patients (caring for tomorrow’s patients), improve the quality of life of people with dementia and improve the care and support they receive (caring for today’s patients) by:

  • facilitating cutting-edge research that gives us a better understanding of how dementia occurs and how to prevent it, as well as points of action for diagnosis and treatment
  • developing and applying effective and workable tools, interventions, care models and innovations designed to improve quality of life and the quality and efficiency of integrated care and support for people with dementia and their informal carers.

The programme is divided into 4 themes.

  1. Cause and mechanism of the disease
  2. Diagnosis
  3. Treatment and prevention
  4. Efficient care and support

Research projects will be granted in each of the 4 themes. The first projects have started in 2014. 

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