TABLE OF CONTENTS
Alzheimer's Legal & Financial Planning
The Sooner, The BetterA complication of diseases such as Alzheimer’s is that the person may lack or gradually lose the ability to think clearly. This change affects his or her ability to participate meaningfully in decision making and makes early legal and financial planning even more important. Although difficult questions often arise, advance planning can help people with Alzheimer’s and their families clarify their wishes and make well-informed decisions about health care and financial arrangements.
When possible, advance planning should take place soon after a diagnosis of early-stage Alzheimer’s disease while the person can participate in discussions. People with early-stage disease are often capable of understanding many aspects and consequences of legal decision making. However, legal and medical experts say that many forms of planning can help the person and his or her family even if the person is diagnosed with later-stage Alzheimer’s.
There are good reasons to retain the services of a lawyer when preparing advance planning documents. For example, a lawyer can help interpret different State laws and suggest ways to ensure that the person's and family's wishes are carried out. It's important to understand that laws vary by State, and changes in situation—for instance, a divorce, relocation, or death in the family—can influence how documents are prepared and maintained.
Legal, Financial, and Health Care Planning DocumentsWhen families begin the legal planning process, there are a number of strategies and legal documents they need to discuss. Depending on the family situation and the applicable State laws, some or all of the following terms and documents may be introduced by the lawyer hired to assist in this process. Broadly speaking, these documents can be divided into two groups:
- documents that communicate the health care wishes of someone who may no longer be able to make health care decisions
- documents that communicate the financial management and estate plan wishes of someone who may no longer be able to make financial decisions
Advance Directives for Health CareAdvance directives for health care are documents that communicate the health care wishes of a person with Alzheimer’s disease. These decisions are then carried out after the person no longer can make decisions. In most cases, these documents must be prepared while the person is legally able to execute them.
A Living Will records a person's wishes for medical treatment near the end of life. It may do the following:
- specify the extent of life-sustaining treatment and major health care the person wants
- help a terminal patient die with dignity
- protect the physician or hospital from liability for carrying out the patient's instructions
- specify how much discretion the person gives to his or her proxy (discussed below) about end-of-life decisions
A Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care designates a person, sometimes called an agent or proxy, to make health care decisions when the person with Alzheimer’s disease no longer can do so. Depending on State laws and the person's preferences, the proxy might be authorized to:
- refuse or agree to treatments
- change health care providers
- remove the person from an institution
- decide about making organ donations
- decide about starting or continuing life support (if not specified in a living will)
- decide whether the person with Alzheimer’s will end life at home or in a facility
- have access to medical records
Access to private medical information is closely regulated. The person with Alzheimer's disease must state in writing who can see or use personal medical records.
Advance Directives for Financial and Estate ManagementAdvance directives for financial and estate management must be created while the person with Alzheimer’s still can make these decisions (sometimes referred to as "having legal capacity" to make decisions). These directives may include some or all of the following:
A Will indicates how a person's assets and estate will be distributed upon death. It also can specify:
- arrangements for care of minors
- trusts to manage the estate
- funeral and/or burial arrangements
A Durable Power of Attorney for Finances names someone to make financial decisions when the person with Alzheimer’s disease no longer can. It can help people with the disease and their families avoid court actions that may take away control of financial affairs.
A Living Trust provides instructions about the person's estate and appoints someone, called the trustee, to hold title to property and funds for the beneficiaries. The trustee follows these instructions after the person no longer can manage his or her affairs.
The person with Alzheimer’s disease also can name the trustee as the health care proxy through the durable power of attorney for health care.
A living trust can:
- include a wide range of property
- provide a detailed plan for property disposition
- avoid the expense and delay of probate (in which the courts establish the validity of a will)
- state how property should be distributed when the last beneficiary dies and whether the trust should continue to benefit others
Who Can Help?Health Care Providers—Health care providers cannot act as legal or financial advisors, but they can encourage planning discussions between patients and their families. Qualified clinicians can also guide patients, families, the care team, attorneys, and judges regarding the patient's ability to make decisions.
Elder Law Attorneys (ELAs)—An ELA helps older people and families:
- interpret State laws
- plan how their wishes will be carried out
- understand their financial options
- learn how to preserve financial assets while caring for a loved one
Geriatric Care Managers (GCMs)—GCMs are trained social workers or nurses who can help people with Alzheimer’s disease and their families:
- discuss difficult topics and complex issues
- address emotional concerns
- make short- and long-term plans
- evaluate in-home care needs
- select care personnel
- coordinate medical services
- evaluate other living arrangements
- provide caregiver stress relief
Steps for Getting Your Affairs in Order
Other Advance Planning AdviceStart discussions early. The rate of decline differs for each person with Alzheimer’s disease, and his or her ability to be involved in planning will decline over time. People in the early stages of the disease may be able to understand the issues, but they may also be defensive or emotionally unable to deal with difficult questions. Remember that not all people are diagnosed at an early stage. Decision making already may be difficult when Alzheimer’s disease is diagnosed.
Review plans over time. Changes in personal situations—such as a divorce, relocation, or death in the family—and in State laws can affect how legal documents are prepared and maintained. Review plans regularly, and update documents as needed.
Reduce anxiety about funeral and burial arrangements. Advance planning for the funeral and burial can provide a sense of peace and reduce anxiety for both the person with Alzheimer’s and the family.
Resources for Low-Income FamiliesFamilies who cannot afford a lawyer still can do advance planning. Samples of basic health planning documents can be downloaded from State government websites. Area Agency on Aging officials may provide legal advice or help. Other possible sources of legal assistance and referral include State legal aid offices, the State bar association, local nonprofit agencies, foundations, and social service agencies.
SummaryFacing Alzheimer’s disease can be emotionally wrenching for all concerned. A legal expert and members of the health care team can help the person and family address end-of-life issues. Advance health care and financial planning can help people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and their families confront tough questions about future treatment, caregiving, and legal arrangements.
Overview of Medical, Legal, and Financial Planning Documents
How It Is Used
Describes and instructs how the person wants end-of-life health care managed
|Durable Power of Attorney for Health Care
Gives a designated person the authority to make health care decisions on behalf of the person with Alzheimer’s
|Do Not Resuscitate Form
Instructs health care professionals not to perform CPR in case of stopped heart or stopped breathing
How It Is Used
Indicates how a person's assets and estate will be distributed among beneficiaries after his/her death
|Durable Power of Attorney for Finances
Gives a designated person the authority to make legal/financial decisions on behalf of the person with Alzheimer’s
Gives a designated person (trustee) the authority to hold and distribute property and funds for the person with Alzheimer’s
For More InformationAlzheimer's Disease Education and Referral (ADEAR) Center
P.O. Box 8250
Silver Spring, MD 20907-8250
The National Institute on Aging's ADEAR Center offers information and publications for families, caregivers, and professionals on diagnosis, treatment, patient care, caregiver needs, long-term care, education and training, and research related to Alzheimer’s disease. Staff members answer telephone, email, and written requests and make referrals to local and national resources. Visit the ADEAR website to learn more about Alzheimer's and other dementias, find clinical trials, and sign up for email updates.
Families often need information about community resources, such as home care, adult day care, and nursing homes. Contact the Eldercare Locator to find these resources in your area. The Eldercare Locator is a service of the Administration on Aging.
National Institute on Aging
P.O. Box 8057
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8057
This service of the NIA offers many helpful publications, including:
- AgePage: Getting Your Affairs in Order
- Advance Care Planning: Tips from the National Institute on Aging
- End of Life: Helping with Comfort and Care
- So Far Away: Twenty Questions and Answers About Long-Distance Caregiving
This senior-friendly website from the National Institute on Aging and the National Library of Medicine has health and wellness information for older adults. Special features make it simple to use. For example, you can click on a button to make the type larger.
601 E Street, NW
Washington, DC 20049
1-888-OUR-AARP (1-888-687-2277; toll-free)
Aging with Dignity
P.O. Box 1661
Tallahassee, FL 32302-1661
1-888-5WISHES (1-888-594-7437; toll-free)
225 North Michigan Avenue, Floor 17
Chicago, IL 60601-7633
American Bar Association
Commission on Law and Aging
1050 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 400
Washington, DC 20036
Family Caregiver Alliance
785 Market Street, Suite 750
San Francisco, CA 94103
National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys
1577 Spring Hill Road, Suite 220
Vienna, VA 22182
National Association of Professional Geriatric Care Managers
3275 West Ina Road, Suite 130
Tucson, AZ 85741
National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization
1731 King Street
Alexandria, VA 22314
Health Resources and Services Administration
National Institute on Aging
National Institutes of Health
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
NIH Publication No. 08-6422
2 Ways Too Much Copper Accelerates Alzheimer's
Copper hits the brain with a double-punch. It inhibits clearance of, AND stimulates production of Alzheimer's plaque. See the strong evidence that copper is a key player in Alzheimer’s disease.
Copper appears to be one of the main environmental factors that trigger the onset and enhance the progression of Alzheimer’s disease by preventing the clearance and accelerating the accumulation of toxic proteins in the brain. That is the conclusion of a study appearing today in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Copper-rich foods include:
Continued below video...
- Beef or lamb liver
- Brazil nuts
- Blackstrap molasses
- Black pepper
Cumulative EffectAmyloid beta is a toxic protein that lies at the center of what goes wrong in Alzheimer's disease. If not properly cleared, or if too much is produced, amyloid plaque accumulates in Alzheimer's, forming a plaque that jams up the brain.
“It is clear that, over time, copper’s cumulative effect is to impair the systems by which amyloid beta is removed from the brain,” said Rashid Deane, Ph.D., a research professor in the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) Department of Neurosurgery, member of the Center for Translational Neuromedicine, and the lead author of the study. “This impairment is one of the key factors that cause the protein to accumulate in the brain and form the plaques that are the hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease.”
Copper’s presence in the food supply is ubiquitous. It is found in drinking water carried by copper pipes, nutritional supplements, and in certain foods such as red meats, shellfish, nuts, and many fruits and vegetables. The mineral plays an important and beneficial role in nerve conduction, bone growth, the formation of connective tissue, and hormone secretion.
However, the new study shows that copper can also accumulate in the brain and cause the blood brain barrier – the system that controls what enters and exits the brain – to break down, resulting in the toxic accumulation of the protein amyloid beta, a by-product of cellular activity. Using both mice and human brain cells Deane and his colleagues conducted a series of experiments that have pinpointed the molecular mechanisms by which copper accelerates the pathology of Alzheimer’s disease.
Under normal circumstances, amyloid beta is removed from the brain by a protein called lipoprotein receptor-related protein 1 (LRP1). These proteins – which line the capillaries that supply the brain with blood – bind with the amyloid beta found in the brain tissue and escort them into the blood vessels where they are removed from the brain.
The ExperimentThe research team “dosed” normal mice with copper over a three month period. The exposure consisted of trace amounts of the metal in drinking water and was one-tenth of the water quality standards for copper established by the Environmental Protection Agency.
“These are very low levels of copper, equivalent to what people would consume in a normal diet.” said Deane.
The researchers found that the copper made its way into the blood system and accumulated in the vessels that feed blood to the brain, specifically in the cellular “walls” of the capillaries. These cells are a critical part of the brain’s defense system and help regulate the passage of molecules to and from brain tissue. In this instance, the capillary cells prevent the copper from entering the brain. However, over time the metal can accumulate in these cells with toxic effect.
The researchers observed that the copper disrupted the function of LRP1 through a process called oxidation which, in turn, inhibited the removal of amyloid beta from the brain. They observed this phenomenon in both mouse and human brain cells.
The researchers then looked at the impact of copper exposure on mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease. In these mice, the cells that form the blood brain barrier have broken down and become “leaky” – a likely combination of aging and the cumulative effect of toxic assaults – allowing elements such as copper to pass unimpeded into the brain tissue. They observed that the copper stimulated activity in neurons that increased the production of amyloid beta. The copper also interacted with amyloid beta in a manner that caused the proteins to bind together in larger complexes creating logjams of the protein that the brain’s waste disposal system cannot clear.
This one-two punch, inhibiting the clearance and stimulating the production of amyloid beta, provides strong evidence that copper is a key player in Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, the researchers observed that copper provoked inflammation of brain tissue which may further promote the breakdown of the blood brain barrier and the accumulation of Alzheimer’s-related toxins.
However, because metal is essential to so many other functions in the body, the researchers say that these results must be interpreted with caution.
“Copper is an essential metal and it is clear that these effects are due to exposure over a long period of time,” said Deane. “The key will be striking the right balance between too little and too much copper consumption. Right now we cannot say what the right level will be, but diet may ultimately play an important role in regulating this process.”
Additional contributors include first author Itender Singh and Abhay Sagare, Mireia Coma, David Perimutter, Robert Gelein, Robert Bell, Richard Deane, Elaine Zhong, Margaret Parisi, Joseph Ciszewski, and R. Tristan Kasper, all with URMC. The study was funded by the Alzheimer’s Association, the National Institutes of Aging, and a pilot grant from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences.
Alzheimer's Drugs: What You Need to Know
Several prescription drugs are currently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat people who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer's. Learn what they do and how they are different.
People with Alzheimer’s disease may take medications to treat the disease itself, behavior changes, and other medical conditions. Caregivers need to know about each medicine the person takes. A doctor or pharmacist can answer questions about medicines.
Questions to Ask
Questions to ask about medicines may include:
- Why is this medicine being used?
- What positive effects should I look for, and when?
- How long will the person need to take it?
- How much should he or she take each day?
- When does the person need to take the medicine?
- What are the side effects?
- Can the medicine be crushed and mixed into foods such as applesauce?
- Can I get the medicine in a liquid form?
- Can this medicine cause problems if taken with other medicines?
People with Alzheimer’s disease often need help taking medicine. If the person lives alone, you may need to call and remind him or her. A pillbox can keep all the pills in one place. As the disease gets worse, you will need to make sure the person takes the medicine, or you will need to give him or her the medicine yourself.
FDA-Approved Medications for Alzheimer’s
Currently, several medicines are approved to treat Alzheimer’s disease: It's important to understand that none of them can cure or stop the disease. What they can do, for some people, is help them improve for a while from where they started. Most of the time, these medicines work to slow down certain problems, such as memory loss. Slowing down memory loss can allow many people with Alzheimer’s to be more comfortable and independent for a longer time.
The medicines approved to treat Alzheimer’s disease are
- Aricept® (donezepil)—for all stages of Alzheimer’s
- Exelon® (rivastigmine)—for mild to moderate Alzheimer’s
- Razadyne® (galantamine)--for mild to moderate Alzheimer’s
- Namenda® (memantine)—for moderate to severe Alzheimer’s
- Namzarec® (memantine and donepezil)—for moderate to severe Alzheimer’s.
If appropriate, the person’s doctor may prescribe a medicine to treat behavior problems such as anxiety, depression, and aggression. Medicines to treat these behavior problems should be used only after other strategies have been tried. Talk with the doctor about which medicines are safest and most effective.
It is important to understand that none of these medications stops the disease itself.
Medications called cholinesterase inhibitors are prescribed for mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease. These drugs may help delay or prevent symptoms from becoming worse for a limited time and may help control some behavioral symptoms. The medications include:
- Razadyne® (galantamine)
- Exelon® (rivastigmine)
- Aricept® (donepezil).
Scientists do not yet fully understand how cholinesterase inhibitors work to treat Alzheimer's disease, but research indicates that they prevent the breakdown of acetylcholine, a brain chemical believed to be important for memory and thinking. As Alzheimer's progresses, the brain produces less and less acetylcholine; therefore, cholinesterase inhibitors may eventually lose their effect.
No published study directly compares these drugs. Because they work in a similar way, switching from one of these drugs to another probably will not produce significantly different results. However, an Alzheimer's patient may respond better to one drug than another.
Memantine currently is an active ingredient in two FDA-approved medications:
A medication known as Namenda® (memantine), an N-methyl D-aspartate (NMDA) antagonist, is prescribed to treat moderate to severe Alzheimer's disease. This drug's main effect is to delay progression of some of the symptoms of moderate to severe Alzheimer's. It may allow patients to maintain certain daily functions a little longer than they would without the medication. For example, Namenda® may help a patient in the later stages of the disease maintain his or her ability to use the bathroom independently for several more months, a benefit for both patients and caregivers.
The FDA has also approved Namzaric®, a combination of memantine and donepezil, for the treatment of moderate to severe Alzheimer’s disease.
Namenda® is believed to work by regulating glutamate, an important brain chemical. When produced in excessive amounts, glutamate may lead to brain cell death. Because NMDA antagonists work very differently from cholinesterase inhibitors, the two types of drugs can be prescribed in combination.
Doctors usually start patients at low drug doses and gradually increase the dosage based on how well a patient tolerates the drug. There is some evidence that certain patients may benefit from higher doses of the cholinesterase inhibitors. However, the higher the dose, the more likely are side effects. The recommended effective dosages of drugs prescribed to treat the symptoms of Alzheimer's and the drugs' possible side effects are summarized in the table below.
Patients should be monitored when a drug is started. Report any unusual symptoms to the prescribing doctor right away. It is important to follow the doctor's instructions when taking any medication, including vitamins and herbal supplements. Also, let the doctor know before adding or changing any medications.
Clinical trials are the best way to find out if promising new treatments are safe and effective in humans. Volunteers are needed for many Alzheimer's trials conducted around the United States. To learn more, talk with your doctor or visit the ADEAR Center's listing of clinical trials. More information is available at Volunteer for Alzheimer's Research and www.ClinicalTrials.gov.
Note: This brief summary does not include all information important for patient use and should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice. Consult the prescribing doctor and read the package insert before using these or any other medications or supplements.
DRUG TYPE AND USE
HOW IT WORKS
COMMON SIDE EFFECTS
|Cholinesterase inhibitor prescribed to treat symptoms of mild, moderate, and severe Alzheimer's||Prevents the breakdown of acetylcholine in the brain||Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle cramps, fatigue, weight loss|
|Cholinesterase inhibitor prescribed to treat symptoms of mild to moderate Alzheimer's (patch is also for severe Alzheimer's)||Prevents the breakdown of acetylcholine and butyrylcholine (a brain chemical similar to acetylcholine) in the brain||Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, decreased appetite, muscle weakness|
|N-methyl D-aspartate (NMDA) antagonist prescribed to treat symptoms of moderate to severe Alzheimer's||Blocks the toxic effects associated with excess glutamate and regulates glutamate activation||Dizziness, headache, diarrhea, constipation, confusion|
Namzaric® (memantine extended-release and donepezil)
|NMDA antagonist and cholinesterase inhibitor prescribed to treat symptoms of moderate to severe Alzheimer’s (for patients stabilized on both memantine and donepezil taken separately)||Blocks the toxic effects associated with excess glutamate and prevents the breakdown of acetylcholine in the brain||Headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, decreased appetite|
|Cholinesterase inhibitor prescribed to treat symptoms of mild to moderate Alzheimer's||Prevents the breakdown of acetylcholine and stimulates nicotinic receptors to release more acetylcholine in the brain||Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, decreased appetite|
MANUFACTURER’S RECOMMENDED DOSAGE
FOR MORE INFORMATION
||For current information about this drug's safety and use, visit www.aricept.com/prescribing-and-patient-info. Click on "Prescribing and Patient Information" to see the drug label.|
||For current information about this drug’s safety and use, visit the www.fda.gov/Drugs. Click on "Drugs @ FDA," search for Exelon, and click on drug-name links to see "Label Information."|
||For current information about this drug's safety and use, visit www.namenda.com . See Full Prescribing Information (PDF, 555K).|
Namzaric® (memantine extended-release and donepezil)
For current information about this drug’s safety and use, visit www.namzaric.com . Click on “Prescribing Information” to see the drug label.
||For current information about this drug’s safety and use, visit www.janseenpharmceuticals.com/assets/razadyne_er.pdf to see the drug label.|
*Available as a generic drug.
To learn about support groups, research centers, research studies, and publications about Alzheimer's disease, contact the following resources:
Alzheimer's Disease Education and Referral (ADEAR) Center
The National Institute on Aging's ADEAR Center offers information and publications for families, caregivers, and professionals on diagnosis, treatment, patient care, caregiver needs, long-term care, education, training, and research related to Alzheimer's disease. Staff members answer telephone, email, and written requests and make referrals to local and national resources. Visit the ADEAR website to learn more about Alzheimer's and other dementias, find clinical trials, and sign up for email updates.
- Alzheimer's Disease Education and Referral (ADEAR) Center, A Service of the National Institute on Aging
- National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
You can order print copies of these publications from the U.S. government's NIH by calling 1-800-222-2225 or visiting www.nia.nih.gov/health
Debunking 4 Bad Myths About Alzheimer's
Lisa Genova wrote the Alzheimer's classic, "Still Alice". Watch her throw bright light on 4 myths about Alzheimer's, alongside co-host Maria Shriver, whose Wipe Out Alzheimer's Challenge™ is energizing the fight to end Alzheimer's.
LOS ANGELES - Maria Shriver's A Woman's Nation™ and the Alzheimer's Association launched Maria Shriver's Wipe Out Alzheimer's™ Challenge.
Continued below video... It was informed and inspired by The Shriver Report: A Woman's Nation Takes on Alzheimer's.
"Women are at the epicenter of this crisis which is why we must be at the heart of the solution," said Maria Shriver, founder of A Woman's Nation. "We want to better understand Alzheimer's disease. And then prevent it, treat it and beat it. My campaign to Wipe Out Alzheimer's is creating a global community of women activists, agitators and architects of change to ignite impact."
More than five million Americans have Alzheimer's disease – two thirds of whom are women. In her early sixties, a woman is about twice as likely to develop Alzheimer's over the course of her lifetime than she is likely to develop breast cancer.
The Maria Shriver Wipe Out Alzheimer's Challenge will galvanize a global community of innovative and motivated women committed to:
- GET EDUCATED about Alzheimer's disease: what it is, what it isn't and how it affects their lives and their loved ones. Maria Shriver's Wipe Out Alzheimer's Challenge will equip women with tips and tools to help them understand how to potentially reduce their risk for Alzheimer's disease.
- GET ENGAGED and be inspired by the collection of women who are already making strides to wipe out Alzheimer's. Hear their stories, learn about their initiatives and use their brains to help.
- GET EMPOWERED to harness the power of their support networks and build their own networks to raise awareness, raise money and support one another every day.
For more than a decade, Maria Shriver has been on the front lines of the fight against Alzheimer's. In addition to publishing The Shriver Report: A Woman's Nation Takes on Alzheimer's, she has testified before Congress, produced the award-winning Alzheimer's Project with HBO, written the best-selling children's book What's Happening to Grandpa? and most recently executive produced the Oscar-winning film, Still Alice. Her Wipe Out Alzheimer's Challenge will build on the success of these initiatives with a new sense of timeliness and urgency.
"We are thrilled that Julianne Moore has won an Oscar and brought attention to Alzheimer's but attention is no longer enough. It is time to get serious. The Wipe Out Alzheimer's Challenge is an open invitation. The key to solving the Alzheimer's crisis is collaboration," said Shriver. "We are mobilizing a global community and engaging a myriad of organizations. Anyone interested in wiping out Alzheimer's is someone I am interested in working together with."
Maria Shriver has activated a collective of informed, influential, inspirational women, who have committed to make Alzheimer's and women's brains a priority in their own lives, work and philanthropy. The network is comprised of researchers, advocates, politicians, business leaders, entertainers and philanthropists, including Maria Carrillo, Senator Susan Collins, Meryl Comer, Leeza Gibbons, Senator Barbara Mikulski, Ai-jen Poo, Shonda Rhimes, Ann Romney, Brooke Shields, Dr. Reisa Sperling, Pat Summitt, Anne Sweeney, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, Rita Wilson and many more.
"We are thrilled to be partnering with Maria Shriver and A Woman's Nation on this exciting and necessary initiative," said Angela Geiger, Chief Strategy Officer, Alzheimer's Association. "Women are disproportionately affected by Alzheimer's. While longevity and lower death rates explain this in part, there is an urgent need to understand how differences in brain structure, disease progression, and hormonal and molecular characteristics may contribute to higher incidence and rates of cognitive decline. Funds raised through Maria'sWipe Out Alzheimer's Challenge will all go towards The Alzheimer's Association's Women's Alzheimer's Research Fund."
Alzheimer's Disease and Women
Alzheimer's is a global epidemic. Worldwide, an estimated 44 million people are living with Alzheimer's disease and other dementias. Alzheimer's disease is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States, and is the only cause of death among the top 10 in America that cannot be cured or prevented. A woman's estimated lifetime risk of developing Alzheimer's at age 65 is one in six.
Not only are women more likely to have Alzheimer's, they are also more likely to be caregivers of those with Alzheimer's. More than three in five unpaid Alzheimer's caregivers are women. Women are also two-and-a-half times more likely to provide 24-hour care for someone with Alzheimer's. Women are likely to experience adverse consequences in the workplace because of caregiving duties. Nearly 19 percent of women Alzheimer's caregivers had to quit work either to become a caregiver or because their caregiving duties became too burdensome.
To learn more about Maria Shriver's Wipe Out Alzheimer's Challenge and join the movement, please visit www.wipeoutalzheimers.org.
About the Alzheimer's Association
The Alzheimer's Association is the world's leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research. It is the largest nonprofit funder of Alzheimer's research. The Association's mission is to eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. Its vision is a world without Alzheimer's. Visit www.alz.org or call 800.272.3900.
About A Woman's Nation
A Woman's Nation™ is a non-profit organization dedicated to making sure that the value of women is recognized and respected – at home, in the workplace and as caretakers on the frontlines of humanity. Through its multimedia initiatives and innovative partnerships, A Woman's Nation informs, inspires and ignites change in hearts and minds. A Woman's Nation produced a series of award-winning Shriver Reports that explore seismic shifts in American culture and society affecting women today including The Shriver Report: A Woman's Nation Takes on Alzheimer's. Powered by collaboration, A Woman's Nation ignites ideas into action. To learn more, please visit www.AWomansNation.org.
About Maria Shriver
Maria Shriver is a mother of four, a Peabody and Emmy Award-winning journalist and producer, a six-time New York Times best-selling author and an NBC News Special Anchor covering the shifting roles, emerging power and evolving needs of women in modern life. She is the founder of A Woman's Nation, which has produced a series of award-winning Shriver Reports that chronicle and explore seismic shifts in American culture and society affecting women today including The Shriver Report: A Woman's Nation Takes on Alzheimer's. Shriver has been a leading Alzheimer's advocate for over a decade, testified in front of Congress, Executive Produced the HBO Alzheimer's Project and the Emmy-nominated Paycheck to Paycheck and authored the bestselling children's book What's Happening to Grandpa?. She is an Executive Producer of The Mask You Live In, and also an Executive Producer of the Academy Award-winning film Still Alice, which tells the tale of a woman affected by early onset Alzheimer's disease.
- Alzheimer's Association
- A Woman's Nation