Letter to the editor: HOPE bill for Alzheimer's help

Posted 11/19/19

Today, 73,000 Coloradans are living with Alzheimer’s or another type of dementia. Last year, 252,000 of their family members and friends provided 287 million hours of unpaid care to support their …

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Letter to the editor: HOPE bill for Alzheimer's help

Posted

Today, 73,000 Coloradans are living with Alzheimer’s or another type of dementia. Last year, 252,000 of their family members and friends provided 287 million hours of unpaid care to support their journey living with the disease. I was one of those caregivers for my dad, who lost his battle with the disease earlier this year. November is National Family Caregivers Month. Congress should honor dementia caregivers by making their efforts easier.
Care planning allows people with dementia and their families to plan for the future and learn about clinical trials and support services in their community. Individuals receiving dementia-specific care planning have fewer hospitalizations and emergency room visits and are better able to manage their medications. This not only helps the person with dementia, it also lowers health care costs.
Thankfully, Medicare covers care planning services. The problem is that most people don’t know that. The Improving HOPE for Alzheimer’s Act (HR 1873/S 880) would help educate health care providers about this coverage so that they can help connect more people to these services.
Thank you Sen. Michael Bennet, Rep. Diana DeGette and Rep. Ed Perlmutter for standing up for Colorado’s dementia caregivers by actively supporting this bipartisan legislation in Congress. I hope Sen. Cory Gardner and Rep. Ken Buckjoin you soon. Caregiving is hard. Thanks for trying to make it a little easier.
Sheri Foote, Arvada
Sarah Molepske, Lakewood

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