In 2015, there are 15.7 million Americans caring for someone with Alzheimer’s or another dementia, including more than 300,000 here in Washington. I am one of those people.
There are more than 100,000 Washingtonians living with Alzheimer’s disease. As an Alzheimer’s ambassador and caregiver for my wife, it is my privilege to represent them to our elected officials.
In addition to being the sixth-leading cause of death, Alzheimer’s is also the most expensive disease in the nation, costing families and taxpayers a total of $226 billion in 2015. That number will grow to $1.1 trillion in 2050, potentially bankrupting Medicare in the process.
I want to thank Congressman Newhouse for meeting with Alzheimer’s advocates to discuss this crisis. I hope we can count on his support in increasing Alzheimer’s research funding by $300 million in fiscal year 2016.
We must simultaneously support the families currently facing this disease. I urge the Congressman to cosponsor the HOPE for Alzheimer’s Act (H.R.1559/S. 857), which will provide critical care planning to people newly diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.
Concerned citizens should contact Congressman Newhouse and ask him to support Alzheimer’s funding. Visit alz.org/advocacy to get involved with the fight against Alzheimer’s.