Become an Alzheimer's Advocate
Join us and speak up for the needs and rights of people with Alzheimer’s disease and their families.
Now is the time to make Alzheimer’s disease a priority in Maine and across the country. As of 2012, more than 5 million Americans have the disease; by 2050, that number grows to 16 million. In Maine alone, the number of individuals living with Alzheimer’s will increase from 37,000 individuals today to over 53,000 individuals by 2020. One in eight people aged 65 and older has Alzheimer’s disease, and Maine’s 65-74 year old age group is forecast to grow by 77% in the next ten years. The annual cost of Alzheimer’s today is $183 billion; by mid-century, the disease could cost our country over a trillion dollars per year. Most importantly, behind every statistic, there is a person. Millions of people are enduring the devastation of this disease that steals memories, independence, control, time, and ultimately, life. Family members and friends struggle to provide or ensure exhaustive, round-the-clock care as their loved ones succumb to the disease.
2014 Advocacy Forum
Join the faces fighting Alzheimer's disease.
Alzheimer's disease is an epidemic. More than 5 million people in the United States have Alzheimer's, the nation's sixth-leading cause of death; by 2050, that number could rise to 13.8 million. And over 15 million family members and friends currently care for someone with the disease. People like you. Help us make a difference by joining the faces of Alzheimer's at the 2014 Alzheimer's Association Advocacy Forum. Come to Washington, D.C., as we put a spotlight on the disease and compel our policymakers to engage in the fight. Save the date for April 7-9, 2014. Registration coming soon! For more information visit alz.org/forum
State Policy Priorities
Maine State Plan for Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias in Maine
We are exicted to announce the release of the first ever State Plan for Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias in Maine. The plan is a result of a state taskforce that was convened by the Maine Department of Health and Human Services pursuant to LD 859, legislation sponsored by State Sen. Margaret Craven of Lewiston, which was signed into law by Gov. Paul LePage in June 2011. Maine’s Office of Elder Services partnered with the Alzheimer’s Association, Maine Chapter to recruit additional stakeholders to serve on workgroups to develop the plan over an 11-month period. Individuals from across the state were involved, including family and professional caregivers. The Maine State Plan on Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias will help guide our response to meeting the needs of individuals and their families affected by mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease or related dementia today, tomorrow and into the next decade.
Federal Policy Priorities
Implement the National Alzheimer's Plan
In 2050, up to 16 million Americans will have Alzheimer’s disease, creating an enormous strain on the health care system, families, and the federal budget. Recognizing this growing crisis, Congress unanimously passed and President Obama signed into law the National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA), calling for the creation of a National Alzheimer’s Plan. In June, the 2013 Update to the National Alzheimer's Plan was released. In support of the Plan, the President’s fiscal year 2014 budget proposal includes $100 million in additional funding for research, awareness, education and outreach, and caregiver support.
Increase the commitment to Alzheimer’s research
Senator Susan Collins has recently introduced a bipartisan Senate Resolution declaring that the goal of preventing and effectively treating Alzheimer's by 2025 is an "urgent national priority." The resolution recognizes that dramatic increases in research funding are necessary to meet the 2025 goal and urges Congress to double the amount of funding the United States spends on Alzheimer's research in 2015, as well as develop a plan to meet the target of $2 billion a year as recommended by the experts of the federal Alzheimer's Advisory Council. Please take action today and email Senator Collins to let her know you support increased funding for Alzheimer's research. Tell Congress that Alzheimer's disease is an urgent national priority!
Expand education efforts and caregiver support services
HOPE for Alzheimer's Act
In order to ensure high quality medical care and better outcomes for individuals with Alzheimer’s, the disease must be diagnosed, care must be planned, and the diagnosis must be noted in the individual’s medical record. Studies also suggest that an early diagnosis and care planning improve a caregiver’s long-term health. Yet, about half of those with Alzheimer’s and other dementias have not been diagnosed. Consistent with the National Alzheimer’s Plan’s call for timely diagnosis and education for newly-diagnosed individuals, the Health Outcomes, Planning, and Education (HOPE) for Alzheimer’s Act (S. 709/H.R. 1507) would increase diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease, provide information on medical and non-medical services for newly-diagnosed patients and their families, and document the diagnosis in the patient’s medical record. Learn more at www.alz.org/hopeact