February 13, 2019

Advocates Urge Update To Statewide Alzheimer's Plan

Article origination IPBS-RJC
lzheimer's Association public policy director Jason Barrett speaks to advocates. - Jill Sheridan/IPB News

lzheimer's Association public policy director Jason Barrett speaks to advocates.

Jill Sheridan/IPB News

A proposal to address Alzheimer’s disease in Indiana may be considered by Indiana lawmakers. The last time the state outlined a strategy for action was in 2012. 

Former-Gov. Mitch Daniels signed the legislation that planned ways to better connect care, raise awareness and enhance data about Alzheimer’s disease in Indiana. A new bill aims to create an updated state plan. 

A bill, authored by Rep. Greg Porter (D-Indianapolis), would create a new state plan with the help of Hoosiers on the frontlines. 

"Those individuals that live it every day, that understand it," says Porter. 

Alzheimer’s Association advocates met with lawmakers this week and public policy director Jason Barrett says a new federal act – with $100 million attached – could support Indiana efforts. 

"If we have a plan in place in Indiana that says 'here are all the topics we are focusing on, here are the actions that we want to take and the recommendations we made now to move forward on implementation' we’ll be in a very good place to receive some of that competitive funding," Barrett says.

Alzheimer’s is the sixth leading cause of death in Indiana. Barrett says a state disease plan can guide action. 

"What we can do moving forward, what types of policies and regulatory changes may be needed to increase care and support to those living with Alzheimer’s and those caregivers," says Barrett. 

But that bill has not received a hearing – and the deadline for committees to hear bills is next week.

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