Today we can celebrate that Alzheimer’s research funding at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is at $1.8 billion. This is due to an increase that has just been signed into law. Congress included the largest increase in history for Alzheimer’s research in the 2018 federal funding bill, of $414 million. Another priority of the Alzheimer’s Association has also been signed into law: Kevin and Avonte’s Law. This law is a bipartisan bill to protect seniors with Alzheimer’s and dementia and children with developmental disabilities who are prone to wandering. The Kevin and Avonte’s Law reauthorizes the Missing Americans Alert Program, (formerly known as the Missing Alzheimer’s Disease Patient Alert Program), to help reduce injury and death of Americans with Alzheimer’s and developmental disabilities. This program is a proven success, helping law enforcement quickly identify and reunite persons with Alzheimer’s with their families and caregivers. Congress had included this critical legislation in the FY2018 Appropriations bill.
For the 5.7 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease and their 16 million caregivers, giving thanks to Congress is most appropriate for prioritizing Alzheimer’s and dementia research and access to quality care. Listed below are the Alzheimer’s disease 2018 facts and figures which indicate the necessity of the signing of the 2018 federal funding bill.
- Every 65 seconds someone in the United States develops the disease.
- There are 5.7 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s. By 2050, this number is projected to rise to nearly 14 million people.
- Alzheimer’s disease is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States.
- One in three seniors dies with Alzheimer’s or another dementia. It kills more than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined.
- While deaths from heart disease have decreased 11%, deaths from Alzheimer’s disease have increased 123% between 2000 and 2015.
- There are 16.1 million Americans who are providing unpaid care for people with Alzheimer’s or other dementias.
- Caregivers provided an estimated 18.4 billion hours of care valued at over $232 billion.
- In 2018, Alzheimer’s and other dementias will cost the nation $277 billion. By 2050, these costs could rise as high as $1.1 trillion.
- Early and accurate diagnosis could save up to $7.9 trillion in medical and care costs. For additional information go to: www.alz.org
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