News Release

Queen Silvia of Sweden becomes ADI Ambassador

6 December 2018

[Read the news release in Swedish]

  • Every three seconds someone in the world develops dementia
  • Dementia is the 7th leading cause of death worldwide
  • Global Ambassadors support awareness and champion global change
  • Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) supports Alzheimer associations in 94 countries

06 December 2018  Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden has become an Honorary Ambassador of Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI), in recognition of her personal commitment to work surrounding elderly and end of life care, and specifically dementia.

Queen Silvia has a long-standing association with, and support of dementia, in 1996 having initiated a dementia care training programme for hospital personnel in Sweden by the foundation Stiftelsen Silviahemmet. The academic education for assistant nurses, nurses, doctors, physio- and occupational therapists as well as case managers in dementia care for quality of life, are expanding. Whole care units are trained in a certification system by Silviahemmet aiming at highest quality of life and web-based education developed for different care professions and care levels, including family-carers.

Queen Silvia said: “I am honoured to act as an Ambassador for Alzheimer’s Disease International, an organisation which addresses many issues which are important to me. Dementia will continue to affect populations globally, especially rapidly ageing populations such as Sweden. In the continued absence of a disease modifying treatment, more research must be pioneered into risk reduction and care improvements, including world leading risk-reduction research.”

Approximately 150,000 Swedish people have been diagnosed with dementia today and every year approximately 25,000 citizens receive a diagnosis. Around 500,000 individuals are care partners of people with dementia. However, these figures are approximations and it is likely that there are many more undiagnosed persons with cognitive decline. 

Chief Executive of ADI, Paola Barbarino, said: “We are delighted to have the support of Queen Silvia, whose long-standing dedication to the field of dementia and ageing is well known. Having such patronage at the forefront of our work is crucial for raising awareness and galvanising the influence needed to take action on dementia globally.”

Krister Westerlund, Chairman of Alzheimer Sverige, ADI’s member association in Sweden, said: "Alzheimer Sverige, proud members of ADI since 1986, are today happy to acknowledge that HRH Queen Silvia is committing her full attention to help persons with Alzheimer's disease and other dementias. As Chairman of Alzheimer Sverige, I have had the opportunity to involve Queen Silvia in our World Alzheimer’s Month activities. Her work, as well as that of the Swedish Court, has been greatly appreciated by our members, and I am therefore extremely happy to see that Queen Silvia’s efforts will receive global recognition.”

Luis Guillermo Solís Rivera, President of Costa Rica and Queen Sofia of Spain are also Honorary Ambassadors of ADI.

Dementia is one of the most significant global health and social crises in the 21st century, but collaborative, global action and funding are sorely needed to address the impact of dementia.

The support of Global Ambassadors is important to ensure that collaborative, global action is taken to achieve the targets of the WHO’s global action plan on the public health response to dementia, and to support the global transformation of awareness for people living with dementia and their care partners everywhere.

ADI has a strategic partnership with Swedish Care International and a long-standing collaboration with the Karolinska Institutet.


Notes to Editor

Global impact of dementia

  • Every 3 seconds someone in the world develops dementia
  • Dementia will become a billion-dollar disease in 2018
  • Almost 50 million people in the world are estimated to be living with the disease
  • Alzheimer's disease and vascular dementia are the most common type of dementia, accounting for up to 90% of dementia cases
  • Symptoms may include loss of memory, difficulty performing previously routine tasks and changes in personality and mood

The Global Plan of Action on the Public Health Response to Dementia 2017-2025 was adopted by WHO during item 15.2 of the 70th session of the World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland. Find out more about the Global plan, including answers to common questions

About Alzheimer’s Disease International

Alzheimer’s Disease International (ADI) is the international federation of 94 Alzheimer associations around the world, in official relations with the World Health Organization. ADI's vision is prevention, care and inclusion today, and cure tomorrow. ADI believes that the key to winning the fight against dementia lies in a unique combination of global solutions and local knowledge. ADI works locally, by empowering Alzheimer associations to promote and offer care and support for persons with dementia and their care partners, while working globally to focus attention on dementia and campaign for policy change. For more information, please visit

About Alzheimer Sverige

Alzheimer Sverige is a nationwide patient and caregiver organisation for persons with cognitive diseases. The organisation was founded in 1986 under the name Alzheimerföreningen i Sverige. Alzheimer Sverige’s mission is to provide counsel and support to patients and caregivers, to bring attention to the challenges that the progressive disease brings for all concerned and to strive for better care in the Swedish health system. Alzheimer Sverige operates across six key areas: Telephone counselling; café Minnesvärt; World Alzheimer’s Day; Minnesvärt Magazine; collaboration with Non-Governmental Organisations; and dialogue with media and Swedish authorities. For more information, please visit or call the telephone counselling service: +46 020737610.