Advocate

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Join the cause

The Alzheimer’s Association invites you to become an Alzheimer advocate. Join us and speak up for the needs and rights of people with Alzheimer’s disease and their families.

Add your voice to ours — become an advocate today.

Ohio Council Web page

For information on the Ohio Council of the Alzheimer's Association and current public policy issues in Ohio, please visit:  Ohio Council Website.

 

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Advocacy Events

National Alzheimer's Project Act (NAPA) - Give Your Input 

What do you have to say about Alzheimer's disease? What do you think our federal priorities should be when it comes to dealing with this growing epidemic? Participate in this historic initiative in the fight against Alzheimer's disease by giving your input online. The National Alzheimer's Project Act (NAPA) is a law that will create a national strategic plan to address the rapidly escalating Alzheimer's crisis. The Alzheimer's Association is asking advocates nationwide to share their personal stories and challenges in dealing with Alzheimer's disease - either as an affected person, caregiver, family member or concerned citizen. This is an opportunity for average citizens who have been impacted by Alzheimer's disease to have genuine input into the creation of this federal plan.

Make your voice heard, visit: www.alz.org/napa and click on Share Your Input.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

2013 Ohio Memory Day Sends Message of Need to Legislators

Alzheimer’s advocates from across Ohio participated in the 15th annual Ohio Memory Day at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus on Wednesday, April 10. More than 300 advocates met with their state legislators to share their personal stories and encourage lawmakers to make Alzheimer’s disease a public policy priority. Currently, an estimated 230,000 Ohioans are affected by Alzheimer’s disease or a related dementia. 

The day featured a luncheon program in the statehouse atrium. Among the featured speakers were Gor. John Kasich, House Speaker William Batchelder and Ohio Department of Aging Director Bonnie Kantor-Burman.

The 2014 Ohio Memory Day will be held at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus on Wednesday, April 2. For details, contact Steve Olding at (513) 721-4284 or solding@alz.org. 

 


 

2013 Alzheimer’s Association National Advocacy Forum

A record 900 Alzheimer’s advocates from across the country attended the 2013 Alzheimer’s Association National Advocacy Forum in Washington, D.C. April 22-25. The three-day event culminated with a “visit to the Hill” as advocates met with their respective members of Congress on Capitol Hill.

Local advocates Beth Bross, Jean Harlow and Rosemary Huhn and Chapter Executive Director Paula Kollstedt met with Sen. Sherrod Brown and Rep. Steve Chabot (pictured).

The 2014 Alzheimer's Association Advocacy Forum will be held in Washington, D.C. April 7-9.

 


 

2012 Kentucky Advocacy Day Focuses on Caregivers

More than 100 Alzheimer advocates from across the Bluegrass spoke out in support of those affected by Alzheimer's disease at the 2012 Alzheimer's Advocacy Day in Frankfort on Tuesday, Jan. 24. In addition to advocates meeting with their legislators, a special program was held in the Statehouse Rotunda featuring former Miss America and Alzheimer's champion Phyllis George, Kentucky First Lady Jane Beshear and ESPN analsyst/reporter Pat Forde.

Pictured above: From left, Alzheimer's advocate Ann Bryant and Alzheimer's Association Northern Kentucky Program Manager Elise Sebastian meet with Sen. Katie Stine during the 2011 Alzheimer's Advocacy Day.

The 2014 Kentucky Alzheimer's Advocacy Day will be held at the Capitol Building in Frankfort on Wednesday, Jan. 29. For details, contact Steve Olding at (513) 721-4284 or solding@alz.org.

For more information on advocacy efforts in Ohio and Kentucky, please contact Steve Olding at (513) 721-4284 or email: solding@alz.org.
 


 

 

 

 

What is an advocate?

Alzheimer advocates, like those from Ohio (pictured above) who attended the 2010 Alzheimer's Association Action Summit in Washington, D.C., play an important role in improving the quality of care and quality of life for people with Alzheimer’s disease and their families by working to improve dementia care and services; improve access to community-based care; improve quality care in residential settings; and expand funding for research and public programs serving people with dementia.

As an advocate, you will:

 

  • Receive regular updates about current legislative and public policy issues.
  • Stay on top of policy and legislative issues through alerts and updates.
  • Make calls or write to legislators to forward public policy priorities to improve the quality of life for those living with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias.

 


Thoughts on Advocacy

 

 

 

Going From Act to Action for Alzheimer's

By Steve J. Olding
Communications Director

 

 

When President Obama signed the National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA) into law on Jan. 4, it marked a political milestone and historic public policy achievement for the Alzheimer’s Association.

NAPA will ultimately launch a coordinated National Alzheimer’s Disease Plan to address the federal government’s role in support of Alzheimer’s research, care, institutional services and home and community-based programs. According to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, NAPA will ensure that our nation has an “aggressive and coordinated national strategy” to confront the growing Alzheimer’s health crisis.

The next step for NAPA is the collection of public input regarding what our federal priorities should be as it pertains to the impending Alzheimer’s epidemic. This summer, the Association conducted National Alzheimer’s Project Input Sessions across the country. The objective of this campaign is to ensure that federal officials hear directly from Americans concerning what they expect to be addressed in a National Alzheimer’s Disease Plan.

More than 100 of these “town hall” input sessions were conducted, including a local session at The Kenwood in August that attracted more than 40 participants along with congressional representatives and aging officials from Ohio and Northern Kentucky.

At the state level, administrations and legislatures continued to struggle with monumental budget deficits this spring. However, thanks in large part to the work of our advocates in Ohio, support from the Ohio Department of Aging and key legislative leaders, cuts to Alzheimer’s Respite Funding over the next two years are expected to be minor. We believe these funding reductions, at their current rate, should have little impact on Association chapters in Ohio and their level of service.  

Another bright spot at the state level was the passage of the Uniform Adult Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act in Kentucky. The Adult Guardianship Act, now adopted in 28 states, provides a uniform set of rules for determining legal jurisdiction and allows state judges in different states to communicate with one another about adult guardianship cases. We are hopeful that the Act (HB 27) will pass in Ohio before the end of the year.

Whether it’s in Washington, D.C., Columbus or Frankfort, Alzheimer advocates are speaking in a loud and clear voice to their legislators. You can play a vital role in supporting our mission, with little time and effort.

For more on the Alzheimer’s Association and its public policy program or to sign up as an advocate, please visit: http://www.alz.org/ or contact me at steve.olding@alz.org.


New Year Promises New Advocacy Challenges 

By Steve J. Olding
Communications Director

Although it is too early to determine the true long-term ramifications of the November election, it has clearly produced an entirely new political landscape for most states and the nation as a whole.
As it has done over the past several election cycles, the political pendulum continues to swing dramatically as voters show their displeasure with a struggling national economy, growing budget deficits, high unemployment, increasing health care costs and a variety of other issues. Two years ago, the Republicans took the brunt of that voter discontent. This time, it was Democrats who came out on the short end of many elections.
Without covering ground that has already been repeatedly stamped upon by every political commentator and talking head since the election, it is clear that 2011 promises a year of political push and shove.
So what does that mean for the public policy mission of the Alzheimer’s Association? While legislatures and leadership may change, our focus and agenda will remain the same.
Although the news has not always been encouraging, Alzheimer advocates have remained diligent in supporting the cause. In fact, the number of active advocates has never been larger. Short-term disappointments and setbacks will not stop the public policy work of the Alzheimer’s Association and its network of advocates because we recognize the seriousness of the disease and its impact on our nation.
The Alzheimer’s Association continues to make sure that Alzheimer’s disease remains an issue of importance for legislators. Our top federal public policy priorities include: 
·   The Alzheimer’s Breakthrough Act that would increase the government’s commitment to fighting Alzheimer’s disease through research, education and care. Specifically, it would authorize $2 billion per year in research funding for Alzheimer’s disease through the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
·   The Alzheimer’s Detection, Diagnosis, Care and Planning Act (ADD-CAP) would provide Medicare reimbursement for a bundled package of services to increase the detection and diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease and provide access to information and support.
·   The National Alzheimer’s Project Act (which was passed by Congress in December) will launch a coordinated National Alzheimer’s Disease Plan to address the federal government’s efforts on research, care, institutional services and home and community-based programs. This is a major public policy advancement that will have a significant impact on our nation's federal response to the issue of Alzheimer's disease.
In addition to building a stronger and better informed network of advocates, the Alzheimer’s Association is taking major steps to ensure that our message is carried with stronger political clout. Our message is strengthened even more by the recent release of The Shriver Report: A Woman’s Nation Takes on Alzheimer’s, a collaborative study between California First Lady Maria Shriver and the Alzheimer’s Association.
If we are to truly succeed in our mission of advocacy on behalf of the millions of families touched by this disease today and the many more to follow, we must push our message no matter how the political pendulum swings. Today, more than ever, your voice needs to be heard. 
For more on the Alzheimer’s Association and its public policy efforts, visit: http://www.alz.org/ or contact me at steve.olding@alz.org.

 

 

 


 

 

 

Advocates Must Keep Optimism For Future

By Steve J. Olding
Communications Director

Despite our nation’s high unemployment, a massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, an unstable world economy and unrest in many areas of the world, Americans remain positive about their future.

According to a national survey conducted by the Pew Research Center earlier this summer, 64 percent of those polled were optimistic about the future. The survey also indicated that 70 percent of respondents believed that a cure for cancer would be discovered within the next 40 years.

I wonder what the survey response would have been if the people at Pew had asked about Alzheimer’s disease?

While there have been significant advances in Alzheimer research over the past decade, the inability to find the “source” of the disease or to develop more effective treatments has been a bitter disappointment to those with the disease and their families. Equally as discouraging is the current economy and related budget deficits that are forcing many states to reduce funding for senior service programs and Medicaid at a time of growing need.

Although the news has not always been encouraging, Alzheimer advocates have remained diligent in supporting the cause. In fact, the number of active advocates has never been larger. Short-term disappointments and setbacks will not stop the advocacy work of the Alzheimer’s Association and its network of supporters because we recognize the seriousness of the disease and its impact on our nation.

The Alzheimer’s Association continues to make sure that Alzheimer’s disease remains an issue of importance for legislators. Our top public policy priorities include:

  • The Alzheimer’s Breakthrough Act (S. 1492 / H.R. 3286), that would increase the government’s commitment to fighting Alzheimer’s disease through research, education and care. Specifically, it would authorize $2 billion per year in research funding for Alzheimer’s disease through the National Institutes of Health (NIH). There are currently more than 150 members of Congress who have signed on as co-sponsors of the bill.
  • The Alzheimer’s Detection, Diagnosis, Care and Planning Act (ADD-CAP) would provide Medicare reimbursement for a bundled package of services to increase the detection and diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease and provide access to information and support.
  • The National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA S. 3036 / H.R. 4689) -  would launch a coordinated National Alzheimer’s Disease Plan to address the federal government’s efforts on research, care, institutional services and home and community-based programs.

In addition to building a stronger and better informed network of advocates, the Alzheimer’s Association is taking major steps to ensure that our message is carried with stronger political clout.

In May, Alzheimer’s Association President and CEO Harry Johns announced the creation of a 501(c) 4 affiliate organization that will allow the Alzheimer’s Association to take a more aggressive role in its lobbying efforts as well as contribute to the campaigns of legislators and candidates who share in our mission.  

If we are to truly succeed in our mission of advocacy on behalf of the millions of families touched by this disease today and the many more to follow, our base of advocates must continue to grow. Today, more than ever, your voice needs to be heard. 

For more on the Alzheimer’s Association and its public policy efforts, visit: http://www.alz.org/ or contact me at steve.olding@alz.org.

 

 

 

 


 

 

Advocates Keep Alzheimer's on Political Agenda

By Steve J. Olding
Communications Director

Although the economy and health care reform have dominated the political agenda over the past year, the Alzheimer’s Association continues to make sure that Alzheimer’s disease remains an issue of importance for legislators.

When I attended the Alzheimer’s Association’s National Advocacy Forum and Action Summit in Washington, D.C. in March, I was struck not only by the size of the forum, but the enthusiasm and optimism of those in attendance. A record 620 advocates, including more than 200 “first-timers,” attended the three-day event.

When we traveled to Capitol Hill to visit with members of Congress on the final day of the forum, it was impossible to miss our nearly 800 advocates and their purple sashes. While our individual stories were different, everyone had the same request of their respective members of Congress support for the following Association public policy proposals:

  • The Alzheimer’s Breakthrough Act (S. 1492 / H.R. 3286) would increase the government’s commitment to fighting Alzheimer’s disease through research, education and care. Specifically, it would authorize $2 billion per year in research funding for Alzheimer’s disease through the National Institutes of Health (NIH). There are currently more than 130 members of Congress who have signed on as co-sponsors of the bill.
  • The Alzheimer’s Detection, Diagnosis, Care and Planning Act (ADD-CAP) would provide Medicare reimbursement for a bundled package of services to increase the detection and diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease and provide access to information and support.
  • The National Alzheimer’s Project Act (NAPA S. 3036 / H.R. 4689) -  would launch a coordinated National Alzheimer’s Disease Plan to address the federal government’s efforts on research, care, institutional services and home and community-based programs. Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh is a lead sponsor of this bill.

In addition to supporting these important federal initiatives, the Greater Cincinnati Chapter works closely with our sister chapters in Ohio and Kentucky on a variety of state advocacy projects and activities. In Kentucky, more than 100 Alzheimer advocates from across the state came to Frankfort on Feb.3 to meet with their legislators as part of the Kentucky Alzheimer’s Advocacy Day.

In Ohio, more than 250 volunteer advocates attended the 12th Annual Memory Day at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus on April 13. Memory Day is an annual event that provides Alzheimer advocates an opportunity to meet with state legislators to discuss their concerns regarding Alzheimer’s disease and its impact on Ohio.

Whether it’s in Washington, D.C., Columbus or Frankfort, Alzheimer advocates are speaking in a loud and clear voice to their legislators.

As an Association we continue to build a stronger and better informed network of advocates - both locally and nationally. But if we are to truly succeed in our mission of advocacy on behalf of the millions of families touched by this disease today and the many more to follow, our base of advocates must continue to grow. Today, more than ever, your voice needs to be heard. 

For more on the Alzheimer’s Association and its public policy efforts, visit: http://www.alz.org/ or contact me at steve.olding@alz.org.

 


 

Federal advocacy