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Healthy Brain Initiative Continues Public Health Momentum By Kicking Off Next Road Map Development

Healthy Brain Initiative Continues Public Health Momentum By Kicking Off Next Road Map Development
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June 21, 2022
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CHICAGO, June 21, 2022 — In an important effort to help state and local health departments address brain health across the life course, the Healthy Brain Initiative’s (HBI) Leadership Committee, led by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Alzheimer’s Association, gathered on June 7-8, 2022 to kick off the development of a new HBI Road Map. The meeting began with excitement around the national uptake of the current HBI Road Map, which led to all states and many local health departments taking actions to improve brain health in their community. This new HBI Road Map will continue to provide public health officials with a set of strategies to realize a better future for all communities affected by Alzheimer’s and all other dementia. The Alzheimer’s Association is proud to lead this committee, which includes senior leaders in public health, subject matter experts across the care continuum, researchers and physicians from 20 different organizations.

"I'm proud to work with such a broad spectrum of organizations and experts to develop our next HBI Road Map, which will help achieve better outcomes for communities impacted by Alzheimer’s and other dementias,” said Kristen Clifford, chief program officer, Alzheimer’s Association and co-chair of the Leadership Committee. “Risk reduction, early detection and diagnosis, and management of dementia and Alzheimer's affect so many aspects of public health. Thank you to the leaders participating for your commitment to addressing this devastating disease."

At this meeting, the Leadership Committee began the year-long process to develop the next HBI Road Map, which will take input from over 100 experts in the field to compile a national perspective on the intersection of public health and brain health, dementia and caregiving. The Leadership Committee determined that risk reduction of cognitive decline, early detection and diagnosis of cognitive impairment, and dementia caregiving are essential public health areas that must be addressed in the next HBI Road Map. Further, the committee decided that the next HBI Road Map needed stronger emphasis and integration of health equity and utilization of a cross-sector systems approach. Expert workgroups on these topics will convene this summer to develop recommendations and guidance for the Leadership Committee to review later this year. There will also be an open feedback period for state and local public health and the public at large to provide comments on elements of the HBI Road Map.

For over 15 years, the CDC has guided and co-sponsored the evolving Healthy Brain Initiative Road Map Series. The CDC has taken the lead on Road Map implementation by supporting public health programs through BOLD Program awards. Currently, there are 23 BOLD Program awardees in state, local, county and tribal public health departments. Lisa McGuire, Ph.D. is the Lead of the Alzheimer’s Disease Program at the CDC and serves as the co-chair of the Leadership Committee.

“The guidance and resources provided in this work have proven invaluable to state and local health officials, and we are confident the next edition will only further advance the field and help address the growing Alzheimer’s and dementia public health crisis,” said Clifford.

The Leadership Committee is working to make the next edition of the HBI Road Map more action driven to help drive impact across the brain health continuum. The most recent HBI Road Map — Healthy Brain Initiative State and Local Public Health Partnerships to Address Dementia: The 2018-2023 Road Map — elevated public health awareness on dementia, cognitive health and caregiving. It continues to shape the national agenda around brain health.

The Alzheimer’s disease continuum spans decades, providing opportunities for public health to change outcomes in communities across the nation. Just as with other chronic and degenerative conditions, public health efforts can reduce risk, expand early detection and diagnosis, improve safety and quality of care for people living with cognitive impairment, and attend to caregivers’ health and well-being.

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Leadership Committee members:
  • Lisa McGuire, Ph.D., Lead of the Alzheimer's Disease Program, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • Kristen Clifford, M.B.A., Chief Program Officer, Alzheimer's Association
  • Barak Gaster, M.D., Director of Cognition in Primary Care and Professor of Medicine, University of Washington
  • David Hoffman, D.P.S., C.C.E., Associate Professor of Ethics and Health Policy, Maria College; Clinical Professor, State University at Albany School of Public Health, Adjunct Asst. Professor, Albany Medical College and current Associate Board Member of NACDD
  • David Marquez, Ph.D., M.A., Professor of Kinesiology and Nutrition and Director of Exercise Psychology Laboratory, University of Illinois Chicago
  • Diane Ty, M.B.A., Director of the Alliance to Improve Dementia Care, Milken Institute Center for the Future of Aging
  • Eduardo Sanchez, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.A.F.P., Chief Medical Officer for Prevention, American Heart Association
  • Ian Kremer, J.D., Executive Director, Leaders Engaged on Alzheimer’s Disease
  • J. Nadine Gracia, M.D., M.P.H., President and Chief Executive Officer, Trust for America's Health 
  • James Appleby, Sc.D. (Hon), M.P.H., B.S.Pharm., Chief Executive Officer, The Gerontological Society of America
  • Kristi Meyer, M.B.A., Executive Director of Strategy and Planning, Aetna, a CVS Health Company
  • Kristine Yaffe, M.D., Director of the Center for Population Brain Health and Professor of Psychiatry, Neurology, and Epidemiology, University of California San Francisco
  • Marcus Plescia, M.D., M.P.H., Chief Medical Officer, Association of State and Territorial Health Officials
  • Martha Roherty, M.P.P., Executive Director, ADvancing States
  • Marti Macchi, M.Ed., M.P.H., Chief Program Strategy Officer, National Association of Chronic Disease Directors
  • Mike Wittke, M.P.A., Vice President for Research and Advocacy, National Alliance for Caregiving
  • Ocean Le, M.S., Senior Program Coordinator, Diverse Elders Coalition
  • Peter Holtgrave, M.A., M.P.H., Senior Director of Public Health Infrastructure and Systems, National Association of County and City Health Officials
  • Sandy Markwood, M.S., Chief Executive Officer, USAging
  • Sarah Lenz Lock, J.D., Executive Director of Global Council on Brain Health and Senior Vice President of Policy and Brain Health, AARP

The HBI Road Map is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and is part of a financial assistance award totaling $2,795,933 with 100 percent funding by CDC/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by CDC/HHS, or the U.S. Government.


Healthy Brain Initiative

The Healthy Brain Initiative improves understanding of brain health as a central part of public health practice. The initiative creates and supports partnerships, collects and reports data, increases awareness of brain health, supports populations with a high burden of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, and promotes the use of its Road Map series. The HBI Road Map series provides actionable steps to promote brain health, address cognitive impairment, and meet the needs of caregivers. 

About the Alzheimer's Association

The Alzheimer’s Association is a worldwide voluntary health organization dedicated to Alzheimer’s care, support and research. Our mission is to lead the way to end Alzheimer's and all other dementia — by accelerating global research, driving risk reduction and early detection, and maximizing quality care and support. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer's and all other dementia®. Visit or call 800.272.3900.

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