As many of you know, last week, Congress passed the omnibus bill which included $350 million in additional funding for Alzheimer’s. This brings our funding to just below $900 million – which, while still woefully under what is spent on the other major diseases – is a vast improvement.
Hillary Clinton has now made Alzheimer’s a campaign issue and is the only candidate who has a solid plan for addressing this disease that WILL bankrupt Medicare and Medicaid if we sit back and do nothing (or don’t move quickly enough).
I just got some news about an upcoming town hall the Clinton campaign is holding next week in Portsmouth, NH, and it sounds like Alzheimer’s will also be spotlighted there. Portsmouth has a population of 21,000 and there are between 15 and 20 Younger Onset caregiver spouses in their local support group. That’s a massive number for such a small community – and those are only YOUNGER onset – age 65 and younger.
I was in the car today thinking about all of this, and it gave me chills. Back in 2004, when we realized Mom’s “symptoms” were more than normal aging, you barely heard the “A” word uttered. In 2015, it’s a Presidential campaign issue. Our voices ARE being heard. If you’re an advocate – keep doing what you’re doing. We’re chipping away at this, and brilliant researchers like Rudy Tanzi (named as one of Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in 2015) and Reisa Sperling are so ready to find the answers we’ve been looking for for such a long time!
Last but not least, thank you for reading The Long and Winding Road. I am truly grateful for each and every visitor to this site and I would like to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas. I’ll leave you with what was always my mom’s favorite Christmas song…