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Alzheimer's is critical health issue Letter: Alzheimer's is critical health issue

Roanoke Times - 10/26/2017

I am one of the millions of people who care for persons with Alzheimer's disease, and while there are no known treatments, given the many challenges associated with the disease, appropriate care planning is essential. Please let our Congressman Goodlatte know how important this is.

Alzheimer's is a progressive and fatal disease. With advanced dementia in the later stages, those individuals may require intensive hands-on care. Today, more than 1 in 4 seniors living with Alzheimer's and other dementias are on Medicaid. It is the sole public program that covers the nursing home stays individuals diagnosed with dementia require in those later stages. Medicaid covers in home and community-based services which are often important to be a part of in the early to middle stages of the disease.

We are also concerned that making this a priority would eliminate pre-existing condition safeguards for individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer's and other dementias to have continued access to affordable health care. This is a critical issue for the 200,000 Americans who have younger-onset Alzheimer's as they progress through the stages of the disease as they are under the age of 65. Until the millions of Americans living with Alzheimer's and other dementias have access and possible preventative measures, they need to have access to the effective care and support that the disease requires. Physicians, care providers, and those living with the disease should visit alz.org/careplanning to learn more.

Thank you for your support in this fight against Alzheimer's disease and other dementias.

KATHRYN HARLOW

TROUTVILLE

 
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