Your browser does not have Javascript enabled. Javascript is required to view this site. Alzheimer's Association: Advocacy and Public Policy
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Federal Priorities

It's time to act. Public policy decisions must provide the resources necessary to support programs that affect people with Alzheimer's disease and their caregivers. Policymakers must enact public policies that provide better health and long-term coverage to ensure high-quality, cost-effective care for the millions of people who face this disease every day.


Visit our national page for more details.

Palliative and Hospice Care (PCHETA)

Nearly half of all people with Alzheimer's and other dementias are in hospice care at the time of their death. Less than half of surveyed nursing homes have some sort of palliative care program. For people with advanced dementia, such care — which focuses on managing and easing symptoms, reducing pain and stress, and increasing comfort — improves quality of life, controls costs, and enhances patient and family satisfaction. But, as the demand for such care grows with the aging population, more must be done to ensure an adequately trained workforce. The Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act would increase palliative care and hospice training for health care professionals, launch a national campaign to inform patients and families about the benefits of palliative care, and enhance research on improving the delivery of palliative care.

Alzheimer's Research Funding
Nearly 1 in 5 Medicare dollars is spent on a person with Alzheimer's

On July 14, the House Appropriations Committee approved FY17 funding of $1.26 billion for Alzheimer's research at the National Institutes of Health, an increase of $350 million. This action follows the Senate Appropriations Committee budget of $1.39 billion, a $400 million increase. If passed by Congress, this would be the second year in a row federal funding hit a historic milestone.


Health Outcomes, Planning and Education (HOPE)
Health Outcomes Planning and Education

It is crucial that those battling Alzheimer's have access to diagnosis and care planning services which can lead to better outcomes for themselves, their families and their caregivers. That is why the Alzheimer's Association supports passage of the Health Outcomes, Planning and Education (HOPE) for Alzheimer's Act. The HOPE for Alzheimer's Act (S. 857/H.R. 1559) is legislation that would:

  • Provide Medicare coverage for comprehensive care planning services following a dementia diagnosis; the services would be available to both the diagnosed individual and his/her caregiver.
  • Ensure that documentation of a dementia diagnosis and any care planning provided is included in an individual’s medical record.
  • Require the Department of Health and Human Services to educate providers about the new benefit and to identify any barriers individuals face in accessing care planning.

Who supports the HOPE for Alzheimer's Act? Thousands of advocates nationwide have contacted Congress to urge passage of this bill, and the Alzheimer's Association has worked to ensure that the bill has bipartisan support from members of Congress.

State Priorities
Massachusetts Priorities

These are our legislative priorities. Make your voice heard on Beacon Hill by contacting your state legislator and asking them to support our critical legislation:

 

  • Continuing Medical Education Requirement for Physicians (S.1224/H.1200)
    Today, at least 50% of Americans with Alzheimer’s are not diagnosed and of those who are, only 45% are aware of their diagnosis, creating an enormous obstacle for care of people with this disease. This is a critical problem because early diagnosis can help the person with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers receive appropriate treatment and support, helping them live a safer, more satisfying life and potentially slowing disease progression. The physician is in a unique position to identify early warning signs of Alzheimer’s/dementia, and must be aware of the benefits of informing patients of their diagnosis. This bill would require that curriculum content about Alzheimer’s and related dementias be incorporated into physician continuing medical education programs that are required for the granting or renewal of licensure. Sponsors: Sen. Barbara L’Italien, Representative Paul McMurtry
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  • Massachusetts Alzheimer's Project Act (S.1239/H.1223)
    There are more than 120,000 people in our state with Alzheimer's disease, and that number is growing. On the current trajectory, Massachusetts will see a 25 percent increase in the number of people with Alzheimer's disease over the next decade, with an estimated 150,000 people having Alzheimer's by 2025. This bill would create an office for Alzheimer's disease at EOHHS to coordinate government efforts and ensure that appropriate resources are maximized and leveraged. Sponsors: Sen. Michael Moore, Rep. John Scibak
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  • Alzheimer's Training for Elder Protective Services Social Workers (S.341)
    Elders with Alzheimer's and dementia are at greater risk for neglect and abuse—financial, physical and emotional. This bill would establish regulations for minimum-training standards for elder protective services social workers. The bill extends training to these workers who are on the frontline of protecting the most vulnerable elders. This legislation is the result of recommendations from the Elder Protective Services Special Commission Report, which identified a number of ways to improve elder protective services in Massachusetts. Sponsors: Sen. Patricia Jehlen
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  • Alzheimer’s Public Awareness Campaign
    In line with the recommendations of the existing EOEA Alzheimer’s State Plan, and the CDC Healthy Brain Initiative, we support state funding for a Public Awareness Campaign on the warning signs of Alzheimer’s and related dementia. We were successful in securing $50,000 in state budget funding for FY17 and are now advocating for an additional $200,000 budget item for FY18. Please support state budget funding of an Alzheimer’s Public Awareness Campaign for FY18. Sponsors: Sen. Barbara L’Italien, Rep. Denise Garlick

 

New Hampshire Priorities

These are our legislative priorities. Make your voice heard in Concord by contacting your state legislator and asking them to support our critical legislation:

 

  • An Act asking the New Hampshire Senate to create a study group relative to New Hampshire’s direct care workforce
    More than 23,000 New Hampshire residents are currently living with Alzheimer’s or other dementias. This number is projected to reach 32,000 by the year 2025. Due to the pressing need to provide long term care services and supports to the growing population of elderly and disabled consumers, we are asking for a study group to assess New Hampshire’s direct care workforce and their preparedness for the future. Oversight by the HHS would allow the study group, who would work with the permanent subcommittee on Dementia and other stakeholders, to study the care that is given in long term care settings. Additionally, a collection of data on the workforce would include, but not be limited to, research on the number of direct care workers, the stability of the workforce, and the average compensation of these workers.
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  • An Act relative to training of DPH service workers (including APS) in Alzheimer’s and dementia
    Initial recognition and diagnosis of Alzheimer’s can be a significant roadblock in the disease process. Therefore, the New Hampshire Department of Health shall require that all designated local agencies of the department provide training to their protective services caseworkers, and that these trainings be specifically focused on recognizing the signs and symptoms of cognitive impairments. These impairments would include Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, and would lead to a greater understanding of how cognitive impairment may affect screening, investigation, and service planning in a variety of ways. The creation of training to be done would be in accordance with the New Hampshire HHS timeline. It would also be ensured that the training would fit in tandem with the New Hampshire Emergency Responder training, and would establish who in the department will require the training and in what intervals.
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  • Regulatory changes that ensure Physician Training in New Hampshire on Alzheimer’s disease and dementia
    Working with the New Hampshire Medical Society that the New Hampshire Board of Medicine will require that any contributing education necessary for renewal of a physician’s license shall include a course of training and education on the diagnosis, treatment, and care of patients with cognitive impairments, including, but not limited to, Alzheimer’s and dementia. Specifics include identifying the number of doctors who will require training and ensuring that the New Hampshire physician’s training is a level one training with CME’s.

Advocacy Resources



Contact Us
For more information concerning our advocacy efforts, please contact:
Daniel Zotos, Director of Public Policy dzotos@alz.org

In New Hampshire:
Heather Carroll, Manager of Public Policy hcarroll@alz.org
Action Day at Mass. Statehouse
ALZHEIMER'S ADVOCACY DAY
Stand up. Speak out. Share your story.
In The News
 
Events
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2017 ALZHEIMER’S ADVOCACY DAY Stand up, speak out, and share your story
Join us on Thursday, May 11, 2017 to support the passage of bills that will improve the quality of life for individuals with Alzheimer’s Disease and their families:

  • Continuing Medical Education Requirement for Physicians (S.1224/H.1200)
  • Massachusetts Alzheimer's Project Act (S.1239/H.1223)
  • Alzheimer's Training for Elder Protective Services Social Workers (S.341)
  • Alzheimer's Public Awareness Campaign
Enjoy morning coffee with us, hear a legislative briefing and meet with your state representative or senator.

Free and Open to the Public

Doors open at 10:00 AM - Program begins at 10:30 AM


Thursday, May 11, 2017
Massachusetts State House
Hall of Flags

 


Or call 617.868.6718

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Join us on May 5, 2017 for a legislative breakfast with state lawmakers, Alzheimer's Association staff and members of the public to discuss how we can make a difference.

Learn about our legislative priorities aimed at improving the quality of care for people with Alzheimer's and related dementia here in the Commonwealth.

 

Free and Open to the Public



8:00 a.m. Registration
8:30 a.m. Breakfast
9:00 - 10:00 a.m.Program - Q&A session


Center for Active Living / PCOA
44 Nook Road
Plymouth, MA 02360