Join us in celebrating 6 years of dementia research
As we turn six today, we are celebrating not only six years of bringing researchers and volunteers together, but also our collective achievement of helping dementia research to keep going during the pandemic.
See what our volunteers, charity partners and researchers have to say about us!
Since Join Dementia Research began, an incredible 50,000 of you have signed up to the service and there have been 48,000 enrolments onto dementia studies during this time.
Record enrolments during the pandemic
And although you would be forgiven for thinking that COVID-19 would slow things down, the reverse is actually true. There have been over 16,000 enrolments onto studies this year, which is the highest annual figure we have ever had. So thanks to all of you who have remained as committed as ever to helping us make progress with valuable research despite the COVID restrictions.
Over the past twelve months, our research teams adapted their studies to make remote involvement possible, whilst others were keen to learn about the effect of the pandemic on people with dementia. Here are some examples of the studies our volunteers been involved in since the pandemic started:
- Researchers at the University of Bristol launched SleepQuest, an online questionnaire to see if the pandemic was affecting people’s sleep.
- The University of Liverpool opened a survey to understand how the temporary closure of face-to-face services were affecting people with dementia and their carers
- Keen to understand how the pandemic was affecting people’s wellbeing, researchers at Imperial College London launched the Great British Wellbeing Survey and researchers at University College London encouraged people to share how they were feeling via the Air My Opinion app.
- Researchers at Durham and Edinburgh universities adapted the Beyond the Margins study so that people could take part at home via Zoom or telephone. The programme aims to support those with dementia to achieve personal goals.
Significant research findings
Since Join Dementia Research began six years ago, our volunteers have helped to contribute to some significant findings. Perhaps the most notable is the finding that Biogen’s Alzheimer’s drug Aducanumab demonstrated a slowing in the decline of cognitive ability. The approval process for this drug is on-going, but the initial findings are really encouraging and around a third of the study participants were Join Dementia Research volunteers.
We can’t thank our volunteers enough for their support, 50,000 volunteers in six years is a great achievement, but we still need more people to take part. We need those living with dementia, such as Joyce who has Alzheimer’s disease as well as healthy volunteers like Jude.
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