Alzheimer’s disease is a growing public health crisis in Arkansas. The impact of Alzheimer’s is projected to rise, and the most recent data show:
- 58,000 people aged 65 and older are living with Alzheimer’s in Arkansas.
- 11.5% of people aged 45 and older have subjective cognitive decline.
- 154,000 family caregivers bear the burden of the disease in Arkansas.
- 268 million hours of unpaid care provided by Alzheimer’s caregivers.
- $4.4 billion is the value of the unpaid care.
- $396 million is the cost of Alzheimer’s to the state Medicaid program.
These numbers show that a public health approach is necessary to lessen the burden and enhance the quality of life for those living with cognitive impairment and their families.
Learn more about Arkansas: Alzheimer’s Statistics, Cognitive Decline, Dementia Caregiving
Public health spotlight
In September 2021, the Arkansas Department of Health received a Building Our Largest Dementia (BOLD) Infrastructure for Alzheimer's Program Award from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Explore public health action against Alzheimer’s
Learn more about areas essential to addressing Alzheimer's from a public health perspective.
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State plan overview
In 2021, the Arkansas General Assembly approved a measure that created a permanent Alzheimer’s and Dementia Advisory Council in the state. The council is charged with updating the current Alzheimer’s and Dementia State Disease Plan and working with key stakeholders to ensure that the plan is implemented. The council is currently meeting to update the existing state plan.
Prior to the establishment of the council, an independent working group was formed and began the process of updating the state plan. The council is working from an existing document and will publish an update to the state plan in the fall of 2022.
Resources for action
State and local public health agencies around the country are taking action against Alzheimer’s by implementing the Healthy Brain Initiative: State and Local Road Map for Public Health, 2023–2027. Public health practitioners can learn by example and find resources to help guide their response below.
No known public health action at this time.