New State Task Force Will Address Alzheimer’s Epidemic

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Broyles, Legislators to Discuss Bill

 

Little Rock – On Monday, December 8 at 3 p.m., University of Arkansas legend Frank Broyles, District 27 Representative Dawn Creekmore and Senator Barbara Horn will speak about new legislation that would create a government-mandated task force to address the impending challenges of Alzheimer’s disease in the state.  The event will be in the Old Supreme Court room on the second floor of the State Capitol building.

Approximately 100,000 Arkansans currently suffer from Alzheimer’s, a number that will increase dramatically over the next two decades as the baby boomer generation ages.  The escalating epidemic of the disease, which is the sixth-leading cause in America, promises to be a significant burden on the state’s health care industry.

Rep. Creekmore and Sen. Horn have submitted the bill for the spring legislative session. The task force’s purpose would be to identify the state’s current resources to face the challenges of Alzheimer’s while creating a readiness plan for the overwhelming growth.  The Alzheimer’s Association has worked with the authors and supports the bill.

“We applaud the leadership of Rep. Creekmore, Sen. Horn and Coach Broyles for their proactive efforts in creating the Task Force,” said Marisha DiCarlo, Assistant State Director for the Alzheimer’s Association Oklahoma and Arkansas Chapter.  “The impact of Alzheimer’s on our state will crush the health care system as it is right now and, with their direction, we will have a readiness plan.”

Broyles lost his wife, Barbara, to Alzheimer’s disease and has dedicated much of his time to the fight against Alzheimer’s.  As an Alzheimer’s Association Champion, Broyles speaks out about the reality of the disease and the need for quality care for those with dementia.

Creekmore is the author of the House bill, which is co-sponsored by Rep. Butch Wilkins, Rep. Fred Allen and Rep. Mike Burris.  The Alzheimer’s Association expects additional co-sponsors in the House and Senate. 

According to the Alzheimer’s Association 2008 Facts & Figures, Arkansas caregivers provide over 95 million hours of unpaid annual care for loved ones with Alzheimer’s.  These efforts have a market value of more than $1 billion every year. 

Photo of Frank Broyles

For more information about the bill and the press conference, contact Allison Hogue of the Alzheimer’s Association at (501) 265-0027.

To download and print or share a copy of this press release, click on the link below:
 Task Force Release Document 

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