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Splaine Consulting January 2020 Newsletter
Splaine Consulting HighlightsOur team’s advocacy work, here & abroad
Encouraging Signs for the New Year
Happy New Year! As we look back at 2019 and ahead to 2020, we’re encouraged that efforts to support family caregiving are gaining the front-of-mind attention they deserve, both in research and practice.
Dementia Research Funding: Among the encouraging signs for 2020 was the $350 million increase for Alzheimer’s and dementia research funding at the National Institutes of Health, signed into law in December. This boost in federal funding includes $10 million to implement the BOLD Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act (P.L. 115-406), which will draw more attention to addressing Alzheimer’s as a widespread public health crisis.
Health Systems Improvements: We are also heartened by a new initiative from the Alzheimer’s Association to improve dementia health care and manage its costs in conjunction with over 300 health systems across the country and 21 regional health systems directors (see details in the “Alzheimer’s Around the World” section below).
New Caregiver Scale Validation: As part of the effort to improve the quality of information in the field, we encourage you to complete a survey from Stanford University’s Department of Medicine and/or pass it on to others. The survey, which will take about 10 minutes to complete, is being conducted as part of a study to validate a new caregiver scale and to see if caregivers with different conditions have similar concerns. All responses to the survey are anonymous. For an IRB information sheet about the study, click here.
Exploring the Implications of Medical Marijuana in the ADRD Field
Splaine Consulting recently completed a landscape and literature review on
cannabis as it relates to ADRD and pain management in long-term care. In addition to patient care dimensions, we remain very interested in the implications of increased legalization of marijuana for long-term care providers in their role as employers with major care accountability.
Currently 33 states and the District of Columbia have laws legalizing the use of medical marijuana. Eleven of those states, in addition to D.C., have legalized marijuana for recreational use.
We are exploring the development of a policy center focusing on these issues on behalf of a client. If you are interested in this work, drop us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In Memoriam: James T. Sykes
James T. Sykes of Madison, Wisconsin, gerontologist, mentor to the field and our friend, passed away on Dec. 24, 2019.
Over a long career, Jim had held several positions with the University of Wisconsin-Madison and had been a consultant for nonprofit agencies serving older persons.
He acted on his deep passion for justice for older persons by actively participating in every
White House Conference on Aging since 1971 and in myriad international aging policy venues. In addition, he often served as an expert witness before Congress and state legislative bodies.
We are grateful to Jim for the encouragement and wisdom he shared over the years, and we wish his family peace and comfort in this difficult time.
Achieve a Clearer Policy Vision in 2020
Splaine Consulting is available to assist your organization in achieving a clearer vision in 2020.
Turn to us to help you draft your plan, provide policy analysis, offer grassroots advocacy advice, conduct training or serve as a speaker for your next conference, webinar or educational event. We have the expertise to handle virtually any size project for all types of clients—from local to global, public or private, corporate or nonprofit.
Join a list of prestigious clients that include Alzheimer’s Disease International, Bayer Pharma, National Consumer Voice and the State of Rhode Island. Contact us today.
Alzheimer’s Around the WorldThe latest policy, advocacy & research events and news
Alzheimer’s Association Launches Healthcare Initiative
The Alzheimer’s Association has launched a new initiative to improve dementia health care and manage it more cost-effectively for the more than 5 million Americans living with the disease. To achieve these goals, the association is working with more than 300 health systems across the country as well as 21 regional health systems directors.
“When dementia care is not managed well, or not at all, health outcomes are much worse and the costs are much higher,” said Joanne Pike, DrPH, the association’s chief program officer. “By working with health systems, we aim to improve both sides of the equation, where people living with dementia get timely, high-quality care and the cost to the system is lower.”
Alzheimer’s is the most expensive disease in the United States. In 2019, total
payments for dementia care for Americans age 65 and older exceeded $290 billion.
Studies show that early diagnosis and proper management of Alzheimer’s and other dementias can improve health outcomes and reduce costs.
“Dementia care is complex and expensive,” Pike added. “There are more than 5 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s, and that number is rising. We want to work with health systems and clinicians to meet this growing demand by ensuring people living with dementia have high-quality, patient-centered care and that their care is managed efficiently and cost-effectively.”
Researchers Explore HIV/AIDS, Diabetes and Other Approved Drugs As Possible Alzheimer’s Treatments
More than ever, Alzheimer’s researchers understand that a variety of approaches will be needed—most likely used in combination—for effective treatment of the disease.
With the recent influx of new funding, including more than $2 billion annually at the National Institute on Aging, researchers are expanding the exploration of new treatment avenues. At the same time, scientists are more extensively testing the potential benefits of drugs approved for other diseases for the treatment of dementia.
As an example, through newly awarded grants from the Alzheimer’s Association Part the Cloud Translational Research initiative, scientists are evaluating the use of existing HIV/AIDS, diabetes and organ transplant drugs as possible therapies for Alzheimer’s disease. Other research funded by the recent grants will investigate novel drugs that might alleviate, delay or slow the brain changes associated with Alzheimer’s.
“To drive the field forward and create new therapies for people living with Alzheimer’s and all dementia, the Alzheimer’s Association believes it is important to fund innovative science that explores both new mechanisms and the repurposing of existing drugs,” explained Maria C. Carrillo, Ph.D., Alzheimer’s Association chief science officer.
ADI and DAI To Host Webinar on Dementia Rights
Alzheimer’s Disease International and Dementia Alliance International are hosting a global webinar, “Dementia & rights; from principles to practice,” February 27 at 6 a.m. EST (11 a.m. GMT and 12 noon CET).
The 75-minute webinar will feature a panel of experts from multiple disciplines who will discuss key issues and principles surrounding human rights and dementia and how these important concepts can be translated into mobilization and practice.
The webinar also will be an opportunity for participants to ask ADI and DAI experts for their views and discover the best ways to put dementia rights principles into practice. For additional information on why you should attend the webinar, watch this video featuring Kate Swaffer, CEO and co-founder of DAI.
Sign up for the webinar at the link below. You can use this app to check for the time of the webinar in your specific time zone.