Alzheimer's is a serious degenerative brain condition that affects millions of people worldwide. Several organizations have surfaced to combat the impacts of this condition and look for a cure, including the Alzheimer's Association, one of the most prominent worldwide. Understanding the goals of this organization can help you look toward the future of Alzheimer's research and support.
21 Impacts Of The Alzheimer's Association
The Alzheimer's Association is an organization dedicated to eradicating Alzheimer's disease. It was founded in April 1980 by Jerome H. Stone with the help of several individuals in his family. Since then, it has become a leading funding source for Alzheimer's research and a vast resource for healthcare professionals and the public. They offer different services and engage in activities designed to further research, diagnosis, and treatment for Alzheimer's. Below are 21 of the goals and activities of this organization.
1. Research And Data-Sharing Activities
One of the primary goals of the Alzheimer's Association is to further the research, diagnosis, and treatment of the disease. To that end, they have several programs and activities that they engage in to promote this research. The association pulls in scientific and medical talent from across the globe for answers and publishes studies yearly.
2. International Grant Research Program
The foundation generates revenue through donations, fundraisers and funnels that money into Alzheimer's research. Through the International Grant Research Program, the association spends $310 million on more than 950 projects in 48 countries.
3. Alzheimer's Association International Conference
One of the ways to further the research and treatment of Alzheimer's is to create opportunities for the scientific community to collaborate on ideas. To that end, the Alzheimer's Association holds an annual international conference. The conference brings researchers and medical professionals from across the globe and creates an opportunity for new research and investigation plans to be discussed and contributed to.
4. Global Alzheimer's Association International Network
The Global Alzheimer's Association International Network is a massive database maintained to accelerate research and allow scientists and medical professionals to archive discoveries. The Association maintains the database, but professionals and researchers worldwide contribute. It is the largest database of its kind.
5. The Alzheimer's & Dementia Magazine
The Alzheimer's Association publishes a monthly scientific journal for Alzheimer's and dementia research and studies. The magazine holds a wealth of information from the world's top researchers and health professionals, laying the groundwork for new treatments. It is often used to spread the news of breakthroughs or theories.
To further research and assist those with the disease, the Alzheimer's Association maintains the most comprehensive database and matching service for clinical trials involving Alzheimer's and dementia. Health professionals can use the trial matching service to input their patient's information and match them to trials they may be eligible for. The platform also allows researchers to include their trials and puts health professionals and patients in direct contact with researchers.
7. National Landscape Activities
The Alzheimer's Association is highly active in the national political landscape. They actively work with lawmakers nationwide to ensure that Alzheimer's disease and research are at the forefront of health conditions lawmakers consider. They lobby politicians and provide them with valuable information for decision-making.
8. National Alzheimer's Project Act
Through lobbying and presenting reports to Congress, the Alzheimer's Association was able to get the National Alzheimer's Project Act passed into law. This critical act allowed lawmakers to recruit individuals from various government departments and agencies to collaborate on researching the impact and ongoing research of Alzheimer's disease. The committee presents a report to Congress each year for consideration on what can be done to further the cause.
9. Calling For Government Research Funding
The Alzheimer's Association frequently calls for new government funding sources for research into preventing and treating Alzheimer's disease. Through lobbying and presenting information to Congress, they can win funding for necessary Alzheimer's research into preventing and treating the disease and related dementia disorders.
10. Alzheimer's Disease Facts & Figures Report
Each year the Alzheimer's Association produces the Disease Facts and Figures Report, distributed to all lawmakers and decision-makers in Congress and throughout Washington. This document lets lawmakers know where the organization is at with research in any given year and gives them the information they need to understand how widespread the disease may become.
11. Educational Activities
There are several educational activities that the Alzheimer's Association engages in to increase awareness of those living with the disease on a day-to-day basis. These educational activities often make a difference to patients, their caregivers, and their primary care doctors, allowing for early detection and treatment options.
12. Education To The General Public
The Alzheimer's Association provides a wealth of information for the public. These educational materials are set in common terms so the average person can easily understand them. This education is designed to raise awareness and give people a resource to understand the disease when it affects them or a loved one. They offer brochures, articles, and other community resources for public education.
13. Education For Healthcare Professionals
Some healthcare professionals are not experts in Alzheimer's disease. It can be essential for the early detection and treatment of Alzheimer's and dementia that healthcare providers are educated about early detection and treatment options. The Alzheimer's Association makes information about the disease and detection widely available to all healthcare providers to assist in early detection.
14. Awareness Campaigns
People not directly affected by Alzheimer's disease may know little about it and might not realize how widespread it can be. For these reasons, the Alzheimer's Association engages in activities to raise awareness. Their Alzheimer's Walks are one of the primary ways to raise awareness and funding.
15. National Support Services
One of the primary goals of the Alzheimer's Association is to provide support to patients with Alzheimer's and their caregivers. It can be stressful to be diagnosed with this disease. There are many resources, but not knowing where to find those resources can be overwhelming. For that reason, individuals impacted can use the Alzheimer's Association's website for guidance.
16. 24/7 National Helpline
The Alzheimer's Association runs a 24/7 national helpline for individuals impacted and caregivers. The helpline can help individuals find residential memory care facilities, determine when inpatient care is necessary, or know how to react in a particular situation. The helpline can be vital for caregivers who may have questions about what to do or expect at any time of the day or night. If you need help, call 800.272.3900 to reach the helpline 24/7.
17. ALZ Connected
The ALZ Connected online community forum is another example of how patients and caregivers can get information anytime, day or night. The forum allows patients and caregivers to connect with others, confer opinions and information, and gain knowledge from the Alzheimer's community.
18. Caregiver Online Resources
The Alzheimer's Association makes information available to caregivers online, anytime, anywhere. The resource includes guides on how to care for someone with Alzheimer's in the early, middle, and late stages. There are resources for caregiver training and information about safety and daily living.
19. Alzheimer's Navigator
The Alzheimer's Navigator is an online tool for people with Alzheimer's or their caregivers to map out a plan for treatment and care. The Navigator takes you through safety, legal planning, financial planning, and care support considerations. The Navigator also helps you determine what doctors can be involved in the care and learn what questions to ask and when to ask them.
20. MedicAlert + Alzheimer's Association Safe Return
The MedicAlert + Safe Return program was developed by the Alzheimer's Association in case someone with Alzheimer's or dementia wanders away from home. The patient wears ID jewelry and is registered with the program with an extensive health record.
When the individual wanders, the caregiver can call the 800 number, which alerts law enforcement and local Alzheimer's Association chapters. When someone finds the individual, they can call the number to ensure a safe return, and their medical history can be pulled and provided to emergency responders if needed.
21. Local Chapter Activities
The Alzheimer's Association has state and local-level chapters that provide more localized community support to clients and caregivers. These local chapters also offer fundraising and awareness activities on a local level. For example, Alzheimer's walks may be organized through the local chapters.
The local chapters of the Alzheimer's Association also offer a wide range of support groups for people with Alzheimer's and their caregivers. The support groups for caregivers offer peer support for caregivers, who can often become stressed and ill from caring for a loved one with dementia.
Local chapters also offer a wealth of community resources. They can help caregivers find in-home nursing care or prepare for and choose a long-term care facility. These groups might also offer resources for local doctors and trials in the area specializing in Alzheimer's treatment and research.
Talking To Your Healthcare Provider
If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's or has suspected symptoms, contact your primary care physician for evaluation. If you are caring for someone with Alzheimer's, taking care of yourself can be essential. The Alzheimer's Association has many resources available. Mental healthcare can also be a resource. Therapists online or in your area may offer compassionate mental health support as you navigate your diagnosis or the diagnosis of a loved one.
Online platforms like BetterHelp can help you work through the challenging feelings of caring for someone with Alzheimer's or living with the condition. Because you attend sessions from the comfort of your home, you don't have to worry about commuting to an office visit or being away from your loved one. If you have Alzheimer's, the online format may be easier to understand, and you can choose between phone, video, or live chat sessions with your provider.
Research shows that online therapy is effective for treating multiple conditions. One study concluded online therapy was associated with statistically significant and clinically meaningful reductions in depression and distress-related symptoms.
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