Alzheimer's Association releases 2012 Facts & Figures Report - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Alzheimer's Association releases 2012 Facts & Figures Report


The Alzheimer's Association just released new facts and figures. The report shows there are 5.4 million Americans living with Alzheimer's Disease, which impacts a person's memory, thinking and behavior.

"We perceive this as a disease of the aging and something we don't have to deal with right now, but as the 2012 report suggests, we can no longer bury our head in the sand," said Kelly Hauer with the Alzheimer's Association.

The latest facts and figures report in Iowa: there are 69,000 people living with Alzheimer's. That's expected to be 77,000 by 2025. Also, 135,000 caregivers provide 154 million hours of unpaid care, at an estimated value of $1.9 billion.

"We have to make the investment now before this disease bankrupts our country," said Hauer.

Legislation related to Alzheimer's is currently pending in the Iowa Legislature.

"And that legislation would require the Department of Public Health to dedicate a full-time FTE to the issue of Alzheimer's. So someone in the state going to work simply focusing on Alzheimer's Disease and coordinating public and private stakeholders to really address the disease we're facing here in the state," said Hauer.

A national plan is also in the works. The National Alzheimer's Project Act, or NAPA, is currently in the drafting stage. People impacted by the disease are encouraged to go online to give input and feedback on the national plan.

Those with the Alzheimer's Association said it's our responsibility to speak up and give this disease the attention it deserves sooner rather than later.

For more information on the latest facts and figures from the Alzheimer's Association or to learn more about NAPA, click here.

You can also call a 24-hour helpline at 800.272.3900.

And mark your calendars for September 22nd and 23rd for this year's "Walk to End Alzheimer's" taking place in several eastern Iowa communities.

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