Alzheimer's Foundation of America Releases Recommendations for National Plan to Defeat Brain Disorder, Urges 'No Time to Waste'October 20, 2011 Declaring that our nation "has no time to waste," the Alzheimer's Foundation of America (AFA) today released specific, hard-hitting recommendations on both care and cure to tackle Alzheimer's disease-and urged swift implementation of a national strategy on this growing public health crisis that threatens an increasing number of American families, including aging baby boomers, and the nation's budget.
Entitled "No Time to Waste," the report urges a "bold but practical" approach and calls for formulating solutions within-as well as outside of-current government programs to ultimately "defeat" Alzheimer's disease.
AFA's recommendations for research, clinical care and long-term care come as national experts are examining what to include in an "integrated national plan" as mandated under the new National Alzheimer's Project Act (NAPA), and as the incidence of the brain disorder in the United States is expected to explode by mid-century.
To effect long-lasting change, the report's recommendations include:
- wide-scale public awareness campaigns, including messaging to drive earlier detection, to recruit participants for clinical trials, and to "shift the focus from fear to acceptance of the disease";
- a substantial investment in research toward the prevention, treatment, care and cure of Alzheimer's disease;
- additional dementia training and reimbursement for primary care clinicians; and
- greater training and support for family caregivers of all demographics across the continuum of care.
"NAPA is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to change the conversation about this devastating illness-but we must do it right," said Eric J. Hall, AFA's founding president and CEO and the report's author. "There is no time to waste."
Hall is a member of the Advisory Council on Research, Care and Services, which was recently formed to advise federal officials on the development of a national strategy.
The report incorporates AFA's own beliefs and feedback shared with AFA by its 1,600 member organizations, family and professional caregivers, and experts over the past few months.