ADWG talkers.jpgState Alzheimer's Planning Group seeks public input April 8 in Spokane

Washington's Alzheimer's Disease Working Group is hosting community meetings this spring. The group wants to hear what's needed and what could be improved to better help people with dementia and their family caregivers. Public input will be used to shape strategic plans and policies. One of the meetings will be in Spokane from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 8, at Aging and Long Term Care of Eastern Washington (ALTCEW), 1222 N. Post St. If you are unable to attend, there will be an online webinar from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, April 21. If you're interested in joining the webinar, email by April 20..


Public Policy Town Halls & Seminars 2014

In August 2014, across Washington and Northern Idaho, the Alzheimer's Association held town hall meetings and seminars to highlight—and solicit feedback on—public policy priorities. These include the National Alzheimer's Plan, the Alzheimer's Disease Plan for Washington State, and Voices for Better Health. Our report found that 11 key issues emerged from public input at the town halls:

  1. The public lacks awareness.
  2. Physicians have difficulties with diagnosis.
  3. Dementia care is poor.
  4. Pre-conceived ideas create challenges for those with younger-onset Alzheimer's.
  5. Caregivers and families are unprepared and overwhelmed.
  6. The costs are unaffordable.
  7. Care coordination is needed.
  8. Secure respite care is needed along with solutions for personal and public safety.
  9. Alzheimer's-related statistics are under-reported or mischaracterized.
  10. The Alzheimer's community resources need to reflect more diversity.
  11. More information is needed about non-medical therapies and interventions.

The Chapters* will use input on these issues gathered at Town Halls to inform our work on the Washington State Alzheimer's Disease Plan.

Washington State Alzheimer's Disease Plan

Have a voice in the State Plan and tell the Alzheimer's Disease Working Group how you think the lives of people with dementia and their caregivers can be improved. Take the survey today.


On March 27, 2014, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee signed Substitute Senate Bill 6124, providing legislative authorization to begin the important work of developing an Alzheimer's Disease Plan for Washington State.

Alzheimer's disease is a public health epidemic, and a State Alzheimer's Disease Plan is a critical step in preparing Washington State to meet the needs of the thousands of Washingtonians who are and will be affected by this progressive, fatal disease.

Under Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS), a diverse group has been selected for a working group to develop the plan.

Bob LeRoy, executive director of the Western and Central Washington Chapter, was selected to chair the subcommittee dealing with long-term services and supports, and is joined by 12 additional representatives of the Alzheimer's Association working in the 33 subcommittees.

The first of a series of public meetings of the working group was held on Sept. 4, 2014, at the Aging and Long-Term Support administration Office in Lacey. Details about this and future meetings may be found here.

Public Health Leaders Can Fight Against Alzheimer's Disease

The Chapters will introduce The Healthy Brain Initiative: The Public Health Road Map for State and National Partnerships, 2013-2018, released by the Alzheimer's Association and Centers for Disease Control and Preventions to the public health community in Washington State.

Learn why Alzheimer's is a public health crisis and what you can do. Visit the Center for Disease Control and Preventions website for more information about The Public Health Road Map.

*Chapters: Our Public Policy work is a collaborative effort with the three chapters of the Alzheimer's Association serving individuals and families in Washington and Idaho, the Inland Northwest Chapter, the Western and Central Washington State Chapter and the the Greater Idaho Chapter.

For more information on these issues, please contact:
Joel Loiacono
Executive Director
Inland Northwest Chapter