There are 5.8 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease. Among the 110,000 Marylanders who are included in this number is my wife, Kathy. I’ve transitioned from being her care partner to caregiver and now routinely visit her in a care facility. Throughout this six-year journey, we’ve seen our finances stretched to the limit to meet Kathy’s changing needs.
Because I have personal experience as a caregiver, I know the importance of having a care plan as soon as suspicious symptoms become a confirmed diagnosis. People with the disease want to make proactive decisions while they still can about available options: medical and non-medical treatments, support services and clinical trials. However, what is available remains hidden to many families.
To help affected families learn about existing services, I’m asking Senator Ben Cardin to co-sponsor the Improving HOPE for Alzheimer’s Act (Senate Bill 880/House of Representatives Bill 1873) that will educate clinicians about Alzheimer’s disease and dementia care planning services that are available through Medicare.
Both the Alzheimer’s Association and its advocacy arm, the Alzheimer’s Impact Movement (AIM), believe this effort will provide essential tools that will significantly benefit people who are living with dementia.
If you believe in neighbors helping neighbors, I ask you to join me in asking Senator Cardin to support the Improving HOPE for Alzheimer’s Act. In doing so, you'll have earned a heartfelt thanks from both Kathy and me.