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In My Community
From the President and CEO
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July 2014

Dear Friends:

There are more than 5 million people with Alzheimer’s disease in the United States and 44 million worldwide with dementia. These numbers are expected to skyrocket to as many as 16 million and 135 million people, respectively, by midcentury. Alzheimer's is the most expensive condition in our nation today, with direct costs to American society totaling an estimated $214 billion. This number will increase to $1.2 trillion by 2050 unless we find a way to prevent, treat or delay the disease in the very near future. Never has the case for accelerated progress in the fight against this fatal disease been more urgent.

The Alzheimer’s Association is the global leader in Alzheimer’s advocacy, research and support. Around the world, across the country and right here in our community, we are committed changing the course of Alzheimer’s and supporting people with the disease and their families and caregivers. This month we launch our Association-wide FY15 - FY17 strategic plan, the first of three strategic plans that will serve as a foundation to help us accomplish a bold 10-year vision for the Alzheimer’s movement and achieve our goal of ending the Alzheimer’s epidemic.

Accelerating research is one of the five goals in our strategic plan. As a leader in the global fight for a world without Alzheimer's, we have been involved in every major advancement in Alzheimer's and related dementias research since the 1980's. The Alzheimer's Association International Conference® (AAIC®), the world's leading forum on dementia research, serves as a catalyst for generating new knowledge about dementia and fosters a vital, collegial research community. Thousands of researchers from more than 60 countries will gather in Copenhagen from July 12 – 17 for this year’s conference. Watch for exciting news on the latest study results, theories and discoveries bringing the world closer to breakthroughs in dementia science.

We are the experts leading the fight to end Alzheimer's, a disease that remains one of the most critical public health issues in America. Advancing public policy, another of our goals, is vital to our quest of making Alzheimer's a national priority. We now have our country’s first-ever National Alzheimer’s Plan, as well as more than 43 state dementia plans, including plans in Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia. We’ve secured increased federal research funding and the inclusion of younger-onset Alzheimer’s to list of conditions in Social Security’s Compassionate Allowance Initiative, thanks to the tireless efforts of hundreds of thousands of Alzheimer’s advocates who are making a difference.

The heart of our work continues to be enhancing care and support for people with dementia, their families and caregivers. Our professionally staffed 24/7 Helpline 800.272.3900 is available round the clock with reliable information and support for all those who need assistance. Our Caregiver Center offers resources to help at each stage of the disease, information on safety and financial and legal matters, and online tools to help with care planning. Join us at one of our upcoming free workshops or take advantage of our online education opportunities. Attend one of our support groups or log on to our online community. We are here for you.

Increasing concern and awareness and growing revenue for care, support and research are driving factors in our fight against Alzheimer’s, and at no time is this more evident than each fall when hundreds of thousands of individuals across our nation Walk to End Alzheimer’s! This inspiring event unites the entire community in a display of combined strength and dedication in the fight against this devastating disease.  Please sign up today for one or more of our seven Walks this fall in Bowie, LaPlata, and Solomons, MD; Manassas, Reston, and Winchester, VA; and Washington, DC and help us reclaim the future for millions. Start or join a team today. The end of Alzheimer’s starts with you!

Around the world, across our country, and right here at home, your Alzheimer’s Association is leading the way on the path to a world without Alzheimer’s.  Thank you for your unwavering dedication and relentless passion to conquer this devastating disease and ensure that all who are affected have the information, care and support they need. 

With deepest gratitude,

Susan Kudla Finn, PMP
President and CEO
Alzheimer’s Association National Capital Area Chapter


 

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Alzheimer's Association

Our vision is a world without Alzheimer's
Formed in 1980, the Alzheimer's Association is the world's leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research.