• Karakters_1_samenwerking

    Samenwerking | 合作

  • Karakters_5_samenwerking

    Samenwerking | 合作

  • Karakters_6_ontwikkeling

    Ontwikkelingen | 发展

  • Karakters2_werelden verbinden

    Werelden verbinden | 国际接轨

  • Karakters3_uitwisseling

    Uitwisseling | 交流

  • Karakters_4_kennis

    Kennis | 知识

When 71-year-old Shi Anquan chops firewood or visits the market in his village in northern China, his wife, Yuhua, also 71, plods quietly behind. Shi has given up tilling the land to devote himself full-time to the care of his wife, reminding her to bathe and change her socks. The village’s single nursing home won’t take patients with mental diseases. The nearest hospital doesn’t have dementia specialists. Shi must travel with his wife to visit her doctor in Beijing, a three-hour trip each way with two bus changes.

“If someone is going to have Alzheimer’s, China is a rough place to have it,” says Benjamin Shobert, managing director of Rubicon Strategy Group, which advises companies on the senior-care market. “Aging will be the biggest crisis of the century for China, and Alzheimer’s is at the crux of the problem.”

China has 9 million Alzheimer’s sufferers, the world’s largest group of patients with the disease, according to a 2013 article in the medical journal Lancet. Since 1990, life expectancy in China has increased 7 years, to 76; the flip side of that progress is that longer life spans combine with stress and other modern afflictions to fuel a rise in mental illnesses ranging from depression to Alzheimer’s disease. The government has directed limited resources toward the elderly, and only 300 doctors in the country are qualified to treat dementia. “Caring for most dementia sufferers in China is left to family members with no or limited training or support from the state and at considerable physical, psychological, and financial costs to the caregivers,” says . . . . . read more

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