Alzheimer’s is a brain disease that causes a slow, irreversible decline in memory, thinking and reasoning skills. It is the most common type of dementia among people over age 65. In 2016, it was estimated that over 5 million Americans were living with Alzheimer’s and as many as 16 million will have the disease in 2050. There is currently no cure for Alzheimer’s.
Alzheimer’s disease is a major health problem in Washington State. According to 2014 data compiled by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, Alzheimer’s disease is the 3rd leading cause of death in Washington, after cancer and heart disease, occurring at a rate of 43.6 per 100,000 people, compared to the national rate of 25.4. Chelan and Douglas counties both have high rates of diagnosed Alzheimer’s disease, exceeding the state rate. In 2015, Washington State had the 3rd highest Alzheimer’s death rate in America.
In an effort to address the growing problem, Washington State developed a Plan to Address Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Dementias released in 2016, to address Alzheimer’s disease, from the impact on individuals and their families to the impact on rural populations to the cost of care. The plan is being implemented by the Dementia Action Collaborative, a group committed to preparing Washington to manage its growing dementia population.
Reducing Your Risk
Can Alzheimer’s’ disease be prevented? Learn more
Alzheimer’s Disease Fact Sheet (Source: NIA):A recommended guide from the National Institute on Aging.
Alzheimer’s In WA State (Source: WA DOH)
Alzheimer’s Disease Video (Source: NIH):
This 4-minute captioned video shows the process of the progression of Alzheimer’s disease in the brain.
Inside the Brain: An Interactive Tour (Source: Alzheimer’s Association)
The Brain Tour explains how the brain works and the affects of Alzheimer’s Disease. The tour is available in 14 languages.
The Alzheimer’s Project Films (Source: NIA)
A National Institute on Aging/NIH and HBO Documentary Films health series, both feature films and supplemental short films, on Alzheimer’s disease.
- The Memory Loss Tapes
- Grandpa, Do You Know Who I Am?
- Momentum in Science
Know the Warning Signs (Source: Alzheimer’s Association): A list of the top 10 warning signs to print and review with your doctor.
Understanding Alzheimer’s Disease: What You Need to Know (Source: NIA)
Alzheimer’s Disease Medication Fact Sheet (Source: NIA)
Dementia Safety Information Kit: Developed by the WA State Dementia Action Collaborative, this kit for patients and families focuses on safety.
Making Sense of Alzheimer’s: An online gallery of ideas for people to understand the past, present and future of Alzheimer’s disease.
Alzheimer’s Navigator (Source: Alzheimer’s Association): A tool to help caregivers create a personalized, printable action plan about the care of their family member.
Living With Memory Loss: A Basic Guide (Source: UW Medicine)
Individual Appendix Tools:
- My Workplace Rights
- Disability Insurance and Benefits
- Research Studies
- Book List
- Action Steps: A Checklist
- My Care Team & My Contacts
- Terms and Definitions
- My Notes
- Copyrights and Reprints
POLST Paradigm (Source: WSMA)
People with serious illnesses or frailty can communicate decisions about their healthcare goals, quality of life expectations, and wishes about end-of-life treatment wishes. The Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) form is a printed document that can be completed with help by your doctor or other healthcare provider. Learn more at National POLST Paradigm.
Provides programs required under the Older Americans Act and the WA State Senior Services Act. Services include specialized programs to serve adults > age 60 and > age 18 with functional disabilities. Call for information and ask for a Care Coordinator (English and Spanish spoken). Branch offices are available in Moses Lake and Omak.
See the Alzheimer’s 101 section for basic information about Alzheimer’s Disease and related treatments and dementias.
24/7 Helpline: 1-800-272-3900
Alzheimer’s Disease Education and Referral Center (ADEAR Center)
1-800-438-4380 (toll free)
The center provides information on public support services and news about Alzheimer’s disease.
The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America provides resources for people with Alzheimer’s disease and their caregivers and families.
Caregiver Action Network (CAN)
CAN is a family caregiver organization that provides support for people caring for loved ones with chronic conditions.
An interactive map helps caregivers locate public, nonprofit, and private programs and services.
- Source: US Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- Source: Center for Health Statistics, Washington State Department of Health (10/2016).
- Source: Health of the States Report (HOTS)