Mar 6, 2009

Hundreds of Georgians to lobby on Alzheimer's issues

By Bob DeMarco
Alzheimer's Reading Room
Monday is Alzheimer’s Day at the state Capitol.

More than 200 advocates, family members and people living with Alzheimer’s disease from around the state — including 35 from Whitfield and Murray counties — will rally. Advocates will meet with legislators to discuss issues important to the 199,457 Georgia families dealing with Alzheimer’s disease.

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Gov. Sonny Perdue will speak at the press conference at the Capitol and will issue a proclamation to the Georgia Chapter. State Sen. Don Thomas, R-Dalton, sponsor of the Senate resolution creating an Alzheimer’s Task Force, will also speak. There will be a resolution in the Senate recognizing the Georgia Chapter.

Alzheimer’s Day will include a lunch for advocates and legislators and the press conference between the morning and afternoon legislative sessions.

“This is a day for people all over Georgia who have been touched by Alzheimer’s disease to raise their voices and be heard,” said Leslie Anderson, CEO of the Alzheimer’s Association, Georgia Chapter. “There are nearly 200,000 of these families in Georgia and it is the responsibility of the Georgia Chapter to represent them. By raising our voice and working with legislators, we can be a catalyst for change which will affect the lives of everyone dealing with the devastation of Alzheimer’s disease.”

The Alzheimer's Association, Georgia Chapter has been helping families statewide since 1995. During that time, we have been a key part of enacting policy change, including Georgia’s Mattie’s Call legislation, which established a statewide protocol to help locate Georgia’s missing elderly persons quickly and return them safely to their families.

The Alzheimer's Association, Georgia Chapter’s mission is to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research and promotion of brain health, and to enhance the care and support for all individuals, their families and caregivers. The Georgia Chapter has seven regional offices which serve all of Georgia’s 159 counties. For news and information, visit the Georgia Chapter Web site at

2008-2009 Facts & Figures of the Georgia Chapter

Alzheimer’s disease is an escalating epidemic and the Georgia Chapter can help.

There are 199,457 Georgians living with this disease.

There are nearly 500,000 Georgians affected by Alzheimer’s through their role as loved ones of and caregivers for people with the disease.

The Georgia Chapter serves people in all 159 counties in Georgia.

We have 7 regional offices throughout the state that allow us to serve all of Georgia.

The Georgia Chapter offers more than 150 support groups statewide.

We also offer classes and educational opportunities for family caregivers and professionals, year-round and statewide.

Ways the Georgia Chapter is helping Georgians:

Our Helpline staff answers an average of 710 calls per month. Last year we helped more than 8,500 people through the Helpline.

More than 8,200 Georgians attend our support groups annually.

More than 290 Georgians enrolled in the MedicAlert + Safe Return program last year.

Our care consultants made more than 1,600 visits to counsel families one-on-one last year.

Alzheimer’s disease is the 21st century’s health epidemic

78 million baby boomers will soon reach the age of greatest risk for developing

Alzheimer’s and 10 million US baby boomers will develop Alzheimer’s

Today someone develops Alzheimer’s every 71 seconds, in 2050 someone will develop Alzheimer’s every 33 seconds.

One out of eight people age 65 and older, and one out of every two over age 85, have Alzheimer’s.

Experts predict that by 2030, Medicare spending on those with Alzheimer’s alone will cost nearly $400 billion – roughly equivalent to today’s entire Medicare budget.

Alzheimer’s has far-reaching effects on families, business and society

70% of those with Alzheimer’s are cared for at home. Nearly 1 in 4 of the caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias provide 40 hours or more of care.

There are as many as 10 million Americans caring for a person with Alzheimer’s or another dementia.

The cost of Alzheimer’s and other dementias, including direct costs of Medicare and Medicaid and indirect cost to business of employees who are caregivers of persons with Alzheimer’s, amount to $148 billion annually.

Submitted by the Georgia Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association

More About the Alzheimer's Reading Room

Bob DeMarco is the editor of the Alzheimer's Reading Room and an Alzheimer's caregiver. Bob has written more than 1,810 articles with more than 89,500 links on the Internet. Bob resides in Delray Beach, FL.

Original content Bob DeMarco, the Alzheimer's Reading Room