Even though there are currently no treatments that change the underlying course of Alzheimer's disease, early detection — a core function of public health — is important.
As many as half of people with Alzheimer's and other dementias have not been diagnosed.
- improves access to medical and support services
- provides an opportunity to make legal, financial and care plans while the affected individual is still capable
- may reduce health care costs by delaying placement in a nursing home
Two domains within the Public Health Road Map encourage public health officials to undertake efforts to educate the public and medical community about the warning signs of Alzheimer's disease and the benefits of early detection.
Three things the Public Health Community can do
1: On your agency’s website, post information about and link to our 10 Warning Signs of Alzheimer's page and the Medicare Annual Wellness Benefit (PDF).
2: Send information to health care providers on assessing cognition.
3: Partner with at least one group (aging, voluntary health associations, foundations) to distribute information about the warning signs of Alzheimer’s to the general public; and at least one group (physician groups, medical societies, health provider associations) to distribute the information to providers.
For more information on Alzheimer's disease and public health, contact Molly French