Buttrose praises ECU research

Ita Buttrose at ECU Joondalup last week. Picture: Emma Reeves www.communitypix.com.au d404478
Ita Buttrose at ECU Joondalup last week. Picture: Emma Reeves www.communitypix.com.au d404478

The Australian of the Year spoke at ECU Joondalup in her role as Alzheimer’s Australia president and called for an extra $200 million over five years for dementia research.

She praised ECU’s research into the use of using Indian gooseberries, turmeric and a combination of testosterone and fish oil in delaying or preventing the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

Here is an edited version of the speech delivered by Ms Buttrose, whose father suffered from dementia:

Australian dementia research is under-funded in comparison to comparable chronic diseases.

It is difficult to fathom why, given it is the only major chronic disease for which we do not have any effective treatments.

To the contrary, our dementia researchers are as successful in their funding applications as researchers in other fields.

As president of Alzheimer’s Australia, I have been disappointed in the Federal Government’s funding of dementia in recent budgets.

These disappointments caused Alzheimer’s Australia to dramatically rethink its advocacy. We took off our velvet glove and put on our iron fist.

We have learnt to be ambitious without fear on behalf of the more than 320,000 Australians with dementia and their family carers.

This has included marching on Parliament House, Canberra, intense use of social media and the recruitment of nearly 50 federal senators and members as dementia champions.