Founded in 2005, Canadians for Leading Edge Alzheimer Research Foundation (CLEAR) is the only Canadian charity solely focused on funding research to understand, and one day cure the many forms of dementia.
For over 15 years, CLEAR has quietly funded leading edge Alzheimer’s and dementia research by Canadian scientists. We have built a reputation as a valued friend in the research community and to date, CLEAR has invested over $15 Million into 40 research projects and there is much more to do.
In 2017, CLEAR approved a new strategic direction that focused on expansion of our research capabilities through a renewed fundraising effort. A re-examination of our operations also allowed us to achieve cost savings that when added to our investment income, ensures 100% of every future donation will go directly to research. Importantly, an expanded board with significant depth and breadth was put in place to guide, encourage and monitor our progress.
Our research direction is to be focused on finding dementia’s causes, its prevention, and the search for its cure. We plan to lever our research impact through collaborative research that complements or builds on other promising research.
Over 40,000 Canadians will be diagnosed with dementia each year, and over 6,000 will die, until we find a cure.
We need your help to make more research possible.
Many people want to help find a cure for dementia, but unfortunately do not know where to start, or who to trust. CLEAR is well positioned to help these people honour those living with the experience and to remember those lost to Alzheimer disease or other forms of dementia.
Our experience with the provincial government, post secondary institutes, funding partners and individual donors has placed CLEAR in a unique position. We have been funding dementia research in BC for over 15 years. We work with the key stakeholders but we are not tied to any one organization or their administration cost. This allows us to be flexible and fund the projects we see the greatest value in meeting our mission, while putting 100% of your donation towards ultimately finding a cure.
In 2013, the Canadian Government signed on to the 2013 G8 Dementia Summit Declaration . This declaration calls on each G8 country to create a national dementia strategy and to be part of the ambitious goal to identify a cure or a disease-modifying therapy for dementia by 2025 and to increase collectively and significantly the amount of funding for dementia research to reach that goal.
In November of 2016, the Canadian Senate recommended the creation of the Canadian Partnership to Address Dementia with a mandate to create and implement a National Dementia Strategy. The Canadian Senate also recommended that the Canadian Partnership to Address Dementia receive adequate federal funding of at least $30 million annually. (recommendations #1 & #2)
In addition, the Senate recommended that the federal government allocate to the Canadian Institutes of Health Research’s Dementia Research Strategy, as a component of the proposed National Dementia Strategy, 1% of the 2016 direct dementia care costs, or approximately $100 million annually. (recommendation #5
The Senate Committee was told by Ronald Petersen, Director of the Mayo Clinic’s Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center in Rochester, Minnesota that this level of investment would likely permit researchers to find a disease-modifying treatment by 2025.
On June 22nd 2017, Bill C-233 National Strategy for Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Dementias Act received Royal Assent.
On May 14 & 15th 2018, the Public Health Agency of Canada hosted the National Dementia Conference. This was the first step in the creation of the Canadian Partnership to Address Dementia recommended by the Senate. Canadian Ministerial Advisory Board on Dementia 2018
Canada’s National Dementia Strategy was published on June 17th, 2019.
Disappointingly, only $14 Million per year of new Federal was included to support all aspects of the strategy. The Senate’s recommendation was $90 Million per year of new funding with $60 Million going to research towards a cure. As of 2022, there is no new Federal research funding towards a cure.
|Canada 2011||Canada 2031|
|People living with Dementia||750,000||1,400,000|
|Direct Medical Costs||$8,300,000,000||$16,600,000,000|
|Average Cost per person||$11,067||$11,858|
|Source: 2016 Canadian Senate Report Dementia in Canada page 2|
Note that when including lost wages and care costs, etc., the all-in cost of dementia is tremendously higher than that shown above - and the Senate report alluded to the full cost being as high as $293 billion for Canada in 2040.
Also, it is important to know that the impact on caregivers is not included. Studies suggest caregiving 24 hours a day for 7 days a week is often devastating for caregivers and may significantly affect their health, adding to the cost to society.
The BC government reported that in 2016 there were over 60,000 people living with dementia in BC. In 2022 there is an estimated 80,000 and the number is expected to rise to 87,000 by 2024. That is over 3,300 new cases per year.
Source: Provincial Guide to Dementia Care in British Columbia, BC Ministry of Health, May 2016, Page 5
There is a potential variance in the total number of people living with dementia depending on which groups are included in the count. The largest variance is people with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI), where roughly 60% eventually develop dementia. The dementia numbers can be up to 50% more if individuals with MCI are included.
Using the cost assumptions from the Senate Report: the direct medical cost in 2016 was over $680 Million. and will increase to more than $960 Million in 2024.
In 2031, the youngest of the Baby Boomers will turn 65 years old and the oldest will turn 85. At this time 25% of the Canadian population will be over 65. This is important because, increasing age is the biggest risk factor for dementia. (people born between 1946 and 1965)
By 2051, the last of the Baby Boomers will turn 85. This will expand the population of Canadians over 85 to 2.7 Million, up from 770,000 in 2016. (people born between 1946 and 1965)
In 2051, 945,000 of the over 85 will have dementia up from 270,000 in 2016. (250% increase)
Source: Statistic Canada 2016 Census
The risk of developing a dementia increases with age. Dementia affects about 2% of Canadians age 65 to 74 and 35% of those over 85. Canadian Mental Health Association AND Prevalence and Monetary Costs of Dementia in Canada: Population Health Expert Panel 2016 and Canadian Study on Health and Aging
|Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR)||2015 Research Funding||Percent of Total Budget|
|Heart Disease & Stroke||$96,200,000||10%|
|Alzheimer's disease and related dementia||$41,100,000||4%|
|Annual CIHR Annual Budget (2016-17)||$1,000,000,000|
|2016 Canadian Senate Report Dementia in Canada page 16|
(new 2021) Dementia research needs the ground swell of provincial and private donors similar to Cancer research. In 2018, Private donations from this group was $122 Million
Using cancer as an example, a consortium of 42 cancer research funders called the Canadian Cancer Research Alliance (CCRA) invested $491 million into Canadian cancer research in 2018. This includes the $164 million from CIHR listed above. This means that there was $327 million invested by the 41 other partners.
Three of every five dollars invested in 2018 came from the following:
Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) ($164.5M)
Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) ($55.2M)
Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) ($37.8M)
The Terry Fox Research Institute (TFRI) ($23.6M)
Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) ($23.4M)
Source: Canadian Cancer Research Alliance (CCRA) website, Cancer Research Investment in Canada, 2016
Of the top ten causes of death in Canada, Alzheimer’s disease is the only one without a treatment or cure.
16 Canadians die each day from Alzheimer disease. It is the 8th leading cause of death in Canada killing over 6,000 people each year.
We loose over 800 people in BC each year to Alzheimer disease. (BC makes up 13.5% of the Canadian populations.)
Source: Stats Canada website - Leading causes of death in Canada
While 6,000 people per year is a large number, this is not the only form of dementia that kills people. In addition, many people living with Alzheimer often succumb to other diseases or infections because of compromised immune system brought on by having Alzheimer disease or related dementia.
CLEAR is the only Canadian charity with the sole purpose of finding a cure or disease modifying treatment for Alzheimer disease and related dementias.
The other organizations have a primary focus of assisting those living with dementia and their families.