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Technology to Engage – The Birdsong Initiative

Alzheimer’s Speaks Radio Finds Out How

The Birdsong Tablet Engages People

Lori La Bey, Host of Alzheimer’s Speaks Radio is also the founder of Alzheimer’s Speak which offers multiple platforms to educate and support those dealing with dementia.  This Thursday Lori will talk with J. Benjamiin Unkle, Jr., the CEO of Westminster-Canterbury on Chesapeake Bay and Senior Options LLC and Aisha Azher, the Coordinator of The Birdsong initiative.  Join the conversation and learn why LeadingAge, the national senior living provider association, recognized Birdsong with the 2016 Award.

Contact Information on the Birdsong Tablet:

Website:   www.wcbay.com/birdsongtablet

Email:  birdsong@wcbay.com                               Phone: 757-496-1161

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See what LeadingAge has to say about Lori La Bey

 “Feedback from the conference planning committee and our leadership team was extremely positive. Many attendees commented that she was one of the best speakers they had heard.” 

Pat Sylvia, Director of Education & Member Development LeadingAge Washington

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Wicker Introduces Bill to Help Combat Alzheimer’s Disease

Wicker Introduces Bill to Help Combat Alzheimer’s Disease

Legislation Would Award Prizes for Breakthroughs in Research, Detection, and Cures

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., today unveiled his legislation to create prize-based incentives to encourage more public-private collaboration in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease and other causes of dementia. The “Ensuring Useful Research Expenditures is Key for Alzheimer’s (EUREKA) Act” would not replace other funding and research initiatives for Alzheimer’s but add another route for breakthroughs. The bipartisan bill is cosponsored by Sens. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va., Angus King, I-Maine, and Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii.

“America has always been the home of groundbreaking innovation,” Wicker said. “We compete to create, build, and make a difference in people’s lives. The ‘EUREKA Act’ seeks to channel this pioneering spirit through competition to help us better understand, detect, and ultimately cure Alzheimer’s disease. Given today’s budget constraints, it is important to find a way to supplement existing funds to further this critical research.”

The National Institute of Health (NIH) has set a goal of curing Alzheimer’s by 2025. Today, Alzheimer’s is the most expensive disease in America and has a 100 percent fatality rate. According to a report released earlier this year, caring for people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias is estimated to cost the United States $226 billion in 2015, with one in five Medicare dollars spent on an Alzheimer’s victim. Unless a cure is found, treatment costs are expected to grow to an estimated $1.1 trillion by 2050.  In Mississippi, 12 percent of senior citizens have Alzheimer’s. The number of victims is expected to rise 27.5 percent by 2025, increasing from 51,000 to 65,000.

The EUREKA Act is an important step in the right direction. It will spark smart public-private partnerships and leverage America’s best minds toward ending this cruel disease once and for all.

We can make sure it passes and make real progress toward a cure – but only if you speak out today.

Click here to add your name and tell the Senate to pass the EUREKA Act and help us find a cure faster!

Wicker’s legislation is supported by the XPRIZE Foundation, Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, UsAgainstAlzheimer’s, Alzheimer’s Association, Eli Lilly and Company, BrightFocus Foundation, and the MIND Center at the University of Mississippi Medical Center.

“This legislation, which will reward researchers who meet certain milestones in Alzheimer’s disease drug development with cash prizes, will help spur innovation and accelerate discovery of a cure or disease modifying treatment,” said Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr., President and CEO of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. “We, as a nation, still must work to make Alzheimer’s disease research a national priority and make it’s funding on par with other major disease states.”

“We applaud Senator Wicker for advancing an innovative approach to preventing and treating Alzheimer’s disease by 2025,” said George Vradenburg, Founder and Chairman of UsAgainstAlzheimer’s. “The EUREKA Act would spark smart public-private partnerships to leverage America’s best minds with the great work at NIH in a fiscally responsible manner. We look forward to working with Senator Wicker to advance the EUREKA Act into law.”

“An advance in Alzheimer’s research has the potential both to save millions of lives and billions of dollars for the nation’s public health programs,” said Robert Egge, Executive Vice President of Alzheimer’s Association. “With the cooperation of the medical and research communities, we are at a tipping point. We have the ideas, the technology and the will, but we need a focused commitment from the federal government, including robust support for Alzheimer’s research at the National Institutes of Health.”

“This is a time of great and deserved hope in dementia as Congress and the National Institutes of Health have begun to address chronic underfunding of research,” said Ian Kremer, Executive Director of Leaders Engaged on Alzheimer’s Disease. “The Act’s focus on pay for success highlights that we need not only more research but better research, research that changes the lives of people living with dementia today and that reduces or eliminates the risk of people having to live with dementia in the future.”

roger wicker log

“Senator Wicker has been a champion for Alzheimer’s research and related public health policy,” said Patty Dunn, Executive Director of the Alzheimer’s Association Mississippi Chapter. “We applaud his commitment to support a robust National Alzheimer’s Plan by cosponsoring the successful Alzheimer’s Accountability Act and encouraging increased research funding for the National Institutes of Health. Our advocates work closely with his office and appreciate Senator Wicker’s introduction of the innovative EUREKA Act and its goal of advancing research breakthroughs for Alzheimer’s disease.”

The EUREKA Act would authorize the Director of the NIH to work with other federal agencies to establish prize challenges informed by the research milestones contained in the National Plan to Address Alzheimer’s Disease. Challenges could focus in a number of areas including:

Identification and validation of Alzheimer’s biomarkers;
Development of non-invasive and cost-effective early detection and diagnostic tools;
Repurposing of existing drugs to address Alzheimer’s disease; and
Development of new tools and approaches to care for persons with Alzheimer’s disease.

An advisory council that would include experts in organizing and managing such challenges as well as patient advocates and industry representatives will be constituted to determine the competitions, while a separate judging panel will evaluate submissions and make recommendations for awards to the Director of NIH.

Prize challenges enable government sponsors to pay only when a prize team achieves specified goals or milestones. Although funds will be authorized and reserved for awards, prizes will only be granted when teams achieve clearly defined objectives, making the EUREKA Act a cost-effective tool to support the pursuit of the 2025 goal. Additionally, EUREKA would permit the receipt of donations from the private sector and from individuals to fund the competition and build the award fund.

We can make sure it passes and make real progress toward a cure – but only if you speak out today.

Click here to add your name and tell the Senate to pass the EUREKA Act and help us find a cure faster!

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ALZHEIMER’S FOUNDATION OF AMERICA INTRODUCES REMEMBER TOGETHER

ALZHEIMER’S FOUNDATION OF AMERICA INTRODUCES

“REMEMBER TOGETHER”

National Public Awareness Campaign

Invites People to Recreate Photos of Cherished Memories, 

Encourages Early Detection of Memory Issues

at Free Screenings Nationwide

The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA), a nonprofit dedicated to providing optimal care and services to individuals confronting dementia, and to their caregivers and families, today launched Remember Together, a public awareness campaign that asks people to remember together the importance of keeping their cherished memories alive. The public is invited to recreate old photos of favorite memories and share them via social media using #RememberTogether. Photo recreations can be viewed at www.RememberTogetherAFA.org.

Remember Together supports AFA’s rollout of free, confidential year-round memory screenings at community sites nationwide. The rollout builds on the success of AFA’s National Memory Screening Day, which falls this year on November 18, during National Alzheimer’s Awareness Month, and which has provided memory screenings to hundreds of thousands of people since 2003. For a complete list of sites, visit www.RememberTogetherAFA.org.

Remember Together is a friendly and impassioned call-to-action to the public to celebrate their memories, create new ones with family and friends, and help protect their memories and those of their loved ones by getting screened for memory issues,” said Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr., president and CEO of the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. “There is a persistent stigma associated with Alzheimer’s disease that prevents people from talking about it and taking action that could ultimately help improve quality of life. We aim to reduce the stigma and encourage people to seek early detection and proper treatment.”

The Remember Together campaign includes a photo contest that awards monthly prizes. People can submit photos through Twitter, Instagram or www.RememberTogetherAFA.org. Two winners will be announced every month, one chosen randomly and one by popular vote. Each winner will receive a digital photo frame perfect for displaying favorite memories. People can vote for their favorites on the RememberTogether site.

AFA carries out memory screenings in collaboration with organizations and healthcare professionals across the U.S. Participating sites include Alzheimer’s agencies, doctors’ offices, senior centers, long-term care residences, in-home care agencies, hospitals, houses of worship, libraries, pharmacies, and other community organizations. AFA provides all the necessary tools—at no cost—so that healthcare professionals can seamlessly and effectively carry out the memory screenings.

Memory screenings are a significant first step toward early diagnosis. Screenings consist of a series of questions and/or tasks designed to test memory, language skills, thinking ability, and other intellectual functions. A free 10-minute memory screening can help reassure a healthy person or direct people who need follow-up testing to a clinician. Early detection allows people to participate in legal and financial planning discussions with their families, share their care wishes, and take control of treatment to improve quality of life. It also opens up options such as participating in clinical trials for drug and behavior modification therapies. It’s important to note that a screening result is not a diagnosis; rather, it can signal if a person should follow up with a physician for a thorough evaluation.

Remember Together supports AFA C.A.R.E.S. (Community Memory Screening and Awareness-Raising Education: The Road to Early Detection and Care), a new program to expand memory screenings year-round. AFA C.A.R.E.S. is made possible with a grant from the Edward N. and Della L. Thome Memorial Foundation, Bank of America, N.A., Trustee.

Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA)
The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, based in New York, is a national nonprofit organization that unites more than 1,700 member organizations nationwide with the goal of providing optimal care and services to individuals confronting dementia, and to their caregivers and families. Its services include a toll-free hot line staffed by licensed social workers, educational materials, a free quarterly magazine for caregivers, and professional training. For more information about AFA, call toll-free 866-232-8484, visit www.alzfdn.org, follow us on Twitter (@alzfdn), and “like” us on Facebook.

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