Federal Priorities for 2013
Alzheimer’s disease is a growing crisis for our families and the economy. The federal government must address the challenges the disease poses and take bold action to confront this epidemic now.
Implement the National Alzheimer's Plan
Public Law 111-375
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
Over the next 40 years, Alzheimer’s will cost our country $20 trillion. Nearly 60 percent of that will be borne by Medicare. If we had a treatment that delayed onset of Alzheimer’s by just five years, Medicare spending would be reduced on those with the disease by 45 percent in 2050. Unfortunately, there continues to be a chronic underinvestment in Alzheimer’s disease research. The President’s budget proposal would take a first step toward finding the needed treatments, prevention, and cure by including an additional $80 million for Alzheimer’s research.
Expand education efforts and caregiver support services
Despite the growing number of Americans directly affected by Alzheimer’s, there are still widespread misconceptions about the disease, and health care providers are unprepared and undertrained in how to deal with individuals with Alzheimer’s and their families. In addition, support for unpaid family caregivers is wholly inadequate. The President’s budget proposes $20 million for provider education and outreach, public awareness, and caregiver support.
Increase access to diagnosis and care planning
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
Other Legislation We Support:
- H.R. 1619 - Making Investments Now for Dementia (MIND) Act of 2013
- H.R. 1508 / S.1091 - To provide for the issuance of an Alzheimer's Disease Research Semipostal Stamp
- H.Res. 396 - A resolution supporting the goals of National Alzheimer's Disease Awareness Month
- S. 1814 - National Silver Alert Act of 2013
- S. Res. 301 (Durbin Resolution) - supports the goals of the National Alzheimer's Project Act and the National Alzheimer's Plan
- S. Res. 303 (Collins and Klobuchar Resolution) - supports the primary goal of the National Alzheimer's Plan to prevent and effectively treat Alzheimer's disease by 2025
- S. 1562 - Older American Act Reauthorization Act of 2013
- H.R. 2976 - Missing Alzheimer's Patient Alert Program Reauthorization Act
- H.R. 2975 - Alzheimer's Caregiver Support Act
Other Legislation We Have Supported in Prior Sessions of Congress:
- S. 525 - Positive Aging Act of 2011
S. 1263 - National Silver Alert Act of 2011
H.R. 610 - Making Investments Now for Dementia Act of 2011
H. Res. 351 / S. Res. 176 - Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the United States Postal Service should issue a semipostal stamp to support medical research relating to Alzheimer's disease.
H.R. 2800 - The Missing Alzheimer's Disease Patient Alert Program Reauthorization Act
- H.R. 1897 - The Alzheimer's Breakthrough Act (learn more)
H.R. 2798 - The Alzheimer's Caregiver Support Act