UsA2’s Be Brain Powerful Campaign Launches in Switzerland
Global Expansion Announced on World Alzheimer’s Day Following the International Forum on Women’s Brain and Mental Health
Zurich, Switzerland (September 21, 2020) – The Women’s Brain Project (WBP) and the Global Alliance on Women’s Brain Health (GAWBH) launched the Swiss edition of the global Be Brain Powerful® campaign, which promotes the benefits of risk reduction and brain health to women in the fight to prevent, treat, and eventually cure Alzheimer’s as well as raise awareness about all aspects of brain health – from depression to migraine.
The Lancet International Commission on Dementia Prevention, Intervention and Care estimates that over 40 percent of dementia cases globally could be prevented by addressing 12 modifiable risk factors. The World Health Organization also has published guidelines on risk reduction for cognitive decline and dementia. The Be Brain Powerful campaign, translates these findings to actions women can implement in their daily lives.
"In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, brain and mental health must become a top priority for us all,” said Meryl Comer, Co-Founder and Chair of GAWBH, a collaboration led by UsAgainstAlzheimer’s (UsA2). “We are excited to see how the Be Brain Powerful® campaign resonates with women of all ages across cultures. By empowering women around the world with the tools to lead, we can track the emerging science that shows proactive measures may stave off cognitive decline and change the trajectory of brain health for ourselves, our loved ones, and future generations.”
“Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias are the defining global public health crisis of the 21st century,” said George Vradenburg, UsA2’s Co-Founder and Chairman and a Co-Convener of the CEOi and the DAVOS Alzheimer’s Collaborative, which has supported sex-based research on Alzheimer’s and brain health since 2015. “Brain health must be top of mind for families and world leaders, and women around the world are uniquely positioned to do that.”
The virtual campaign launch was September 19th at the International Forum on Women’s Brain and Mental Health 2020, a conference focused on sex and gender differences in brain and mental health as the gateway to precision medicine across the lifespan. The program, moderated by Mara Hank Moret, WBP’s Honorary President and Vice-Chair of the Global Be Brain Powerful® BrainTrust, featured Renee Fleming, international opera star and Global BrainTrust Ambassador, Chabi Nouri, CEO of Piaget, Megan Beyer, former U.S. Diplomat to Switzerland, and Alison Evans, representing the GAWBH and Alzheimer’s Research-UK.
Professor Andrea Pfeifer, Ph.D., CEO of AC Immune SA, lead sponsor of the Swiss Campaign and Chair of the Global BBP® BrainTrust, said, “As a company that is focused on developing new treatments and cures in Alzheimer’s, we are proud to be part of this global initiative. Alzheimer’s is indiscriminate, but women bear a disproportionate burden. We believe the Global BBP BrainTrust will bring thought leadership on this issue to the world stage.”
By 2045, cases in Switzerland are predicted to rise to 268,600 – around 197,000 of these will be women, which is almost equivalent to the population of Geneva. Added Dr. Pfeifer, “The prospect of losing this number of mothers, daughters, wives, friends, sisters, and grandmas, to such a cruel disease is something none of us should accept.”
“WBP is highly interested in understanding sex and gender specific factors which might influence brain diseases like Alzheimer’s, depression, and migraine that are more prevalent in women,” said Dr. Antonella Santuccione Chadha, Co-Founder and CEO, Women’s Brain Project. “That’s why we are excited to have adapted this campaign and be bringing it to Switzerland, to empower women to care for their brain health using scientific learnings which get translated into daily actions for themselves and their families.”
This latest campaign adoption propels the momentum for the GAWBH and its Be Brain Powerful® campaign initiative to support brain health across women’s lifespans as a first-line defense in mitigating the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s, and breaking both the taboo and stigma around brain health. The 2020 Women’s Brain Project campaign launch across Switzerland builds on the successful launch of the campaign in the United States and is sponsored by Biogen Switzerland and Lobnek Wealth Management.
The Be Brain Powerful® Switzerland campaign will be available in French, German, Italian, and English. It features a 30-Day Brain Health Challenge that women can sign up for via email or through an application powered by Swedish technology company, Geras Solutions.
“We believe that prevention and digitalized diagnostic solutions are essential to address patients’ and society’s growing need in the realm of brain and mental health,” said Rickard Forsman, CEO, Geras Solutions. “Technology plays a key role in empowering individuals to invest in lifestyle changes that can prevent or slow down cognitive disease, which is why we are thrilled to be a part of the Be Brain Powerful Switzerland campaign.”
For more information, visit http://www.womensbrainproject.com/be-brain-powerful-switzerland/.
About the Global Alliance on Women’s Brain Health (GAWBH)
The Global Alliance was founded by four non-profits dedicated to raising awareness of the challenges of women’s brain health – the Women’s Brain Health Initiative Canada, WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s USA, Alzheimer’s Research UK, and 21st Century BrainTrust®. The Alliance has made significant progress in moving dementia’s impact on women to the forefront of the global public health agenda, putting the issue on the World Dementia Council’s agenda and currently rolling out the Be Brain Powerful® campaign. The organization’s priorities include raising awareness about the importance of brain health and increasing funding for sex-based research. The GAWBH is an affiliate of the CEOi (a UsA2 enterprise).
About U.S. Be Brain Powerful Campaign
WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s (a UsA2 network) launched the U.S. Be Brain Powerful campaign in November 2018 with an event in New York City featuring former First Lady Laura Bush. The Be Brain Powerful campaign invites women to engage with the 30-Day Brain Health Challenge – an effort that encourages women, and men who support them, to pay attention to the brain as a vital organ and monitor their mood, memory, stress and sleep daily. For 30 days, participants receive a daily email that includes a new brain health activity and opportunity to share their brain healthy behaviors on social media.
About the Women’s Brain Project- Switzerland
The Women’s Brain Project (WBP) is an international non-profit organization based in Switzerland. Composed largely of scientists, WBP advocates for and conducts research on sex and gender sensitive precision medicine, from basic science to novel technologies. The organization aims to get a better understanding how men and women’s brains are similar and different, and to stimulate a global social and political discussion on gender and sex determinants of brain and mental health as a gateway to precision medicine. This goes hand in hand with breaking the stigma around brain and mental health and raising awareness around these topics. The WBP team also aims to contribute to the fulfillment of Sustainable Development Goals 3 (Good Health and Wellbeing) and 5 (Gender Equality), among others.
Jon Summers, UsAgainstAlzheimer’s: jsummers@UsAgainstAlzheimers.org
Shahnaz Radjy, Women’s Brain Project: bebrainpowerfulCH@womensbrainproject.com