Greek Association of Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders (Alzheimer Hellas) is a non-profit organization providing a wide range of services to people with Alzheimer’s disease and their families. Serving the local community since 1995, Alzheimer Hellas offers a safe and supportive environment for people with dementia and also for the caregivers. Currently it counts more than 5.000 members. Alzheimer Hellas aims to raise awareness to the community, fight stigma associated with neurodegenerative diseases, and control behavioral and affective disorders (caused by dementia) with non-pharmacological interventions. Alzheimer Hellas’ action has been recognized internationally and is used as an example of good practice by the Alzheimer’s Disease International (ΑDI). Alzheimer Hellas is a member of Alzheimer’s Disease International and of Alzheimer Europe. Alzheimer Hellas has started in Thessaloniki the operation of the first Unit Confronting Alzheimer’s Disease Problems in 2007, while a second similar Unit started its operation in 2009.
Professor Magdalini Tsolaki, is the Scientific Director of these Day Centres and also the President of the Panhellenic Federation of Alzheimer’s Disease and Relative Disorders. These Units consist of: a) Day Center for Alzheimer’s Disease patients, b) Caregivers Centre – Family Support and c) Care at Home. In these Day Centres many nonpharmacological interventions for patients with Alzheimer’s Disease and their caregivers are operated. Among the services offered in these units are: early diagnosis, treatment, support of research projects, rapid implementation of new therapies in our country (pharmaceutical and non-pharmaceutical), family support and improvement of the quality of life of patients and their caregivers, aiming at the shortest possible marginalization. They serve an average of about 1,400 patients per month which perform approximately 8.000 visits per month! During the last 10 years we recorded 410.000 visits of elderly people with cognitive problems.
Alzheimer Hellas also operates a 24hour help-line, produces booklets and other publications and issues the Newsletter of the Greek Federation of Alzheimer’s Disease. Alzheimer Hellas develops professional seminars during the whole year, periodical courses for every individual interested in AD, meetings and Pan- Hellenic conferences every two years.
Nikolaos Paraskevaidis MSc, received his Diploma degree from the School of Psychology of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and graduated his MSc in Cognitive Psychology and Neuropsychology of Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. He is now a postgraduate student of Applied Psychology in the same university. In the past, he worked at Alzheimer-Hellas (Neuropsychological assessment and Cognitive rehabilitation),at Ministry of Public Order and Citizen Protection (Department of Immigration), at Ministry of Education (Parental Counseling, School for children with mental disorders and Diagnostic and Support Center), Psycho-social Care Service. Furthermore, he is a member of the Greek Alzheimer’s Association and Related Disorders (GAADRD) as well as a member of Hellenic Neuropsychological Society. He has attended a number of seminars and conferences in the field of mental health and neuropsychology as part of his continuing education and has participated as a speaker at seminars and conferences on mental health.