July 20, 2017 by Sanne Franzen
On Sunday, the opening ceremony of the AAIC 2017 in London was held. This year, special attention goes out to cross-cultural aspects of dementia diagnostics and care. Researchers from across the globe were present, leading to lively talks about cultural differences, the role of (quality of) education and language barriers. Brazilian researchers, prof. Yasuda from Sao Paolo among them, notice great differences in the level and quality of education between the cities and rural areas. In Michigan, reaching the Iraqi community turns out to be one of the main challenges. In Melbourne volunteers can often be found for research, but retaining them proves difficult, as many immigrants only remain in one location for a short time, making research with a long follow up hard to accomplish. A universal problem seems to be the underinclusion of minorities and illiterates in (clinical) research. Dr. Jennifer Manly brought up the importance of investigating a community population, to make sure cognitive instruments are also valid for the population who doens’t visit the hospital or GP for their complaints.
New instruments seem to be in constant development, although a lot of research is also focused on developing screening tools and other relevant materials. For example, Dr. Ayhan from Ankara, Turkey presented his research on the 3MS. I expect to hear a lot more from Turkey, where neuropsychology seems to have gained a (re)new(ed) focus!