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What would a population‐level approach to dementia risk reduction look like, and how would it work?

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Govia, Ishtar 
Peters, Ruth 
Richard, Edo 
Stephan, Blossom CM 


Dementia is a leading global public health challenge. Prevention approaches have traditionally focused on individual-level strategies. However, such approaches have limited potential, particularly for resource-constrained populations in which exposure to risk factors is greatest, and exposure to protective factors is lowest. A population-level approach to dementia risk reduction is therefore essential to meet the scale of the challenge and to tackle global inequalities in risk and incidence of disease. Such approaches can be highly cost effective. In this viewpoint article, we describe what such an approach should look like, barriers and facilitators to success, and how we should go about achieving it. We include 10 strategic goals to achieve population-level dementia risk reduction and protection enhancement, targeted at researchers, professionals, funders, science communicators, governments, businesses, and policy makers. If we are to significantly reduce the prevalence of dementia there must be increased emphasis on population-level approaches.



dementia, public health, risk reduction, Humans, Public Health, Risk Factors, Dementia, Risk Reduction Behavior

Journal Title

Alzheimer's and Dementia

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Department of Health (via National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)) (NIHR302276)