Fighting Alzheimer's Requires a 'BOLD' Move
by Eric Renfroe
Feb 05, 2018 | 5978 views | 0 0 comments | 404 404 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Last year, I became an Alzheimer's Ambassador so I could speak on behalf of my late grandmother, Roslyn Shapiro. She was one of the more than 5 million Americans diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease.

I went to Capitol Hill for Alzheimer’s Advocacy Day alongside 1,300 fellow advocates to share my story. Together, we successfully urged our representatives in Congress to support the additional funding needed in the fight against this devastating disease.

And we thank those members of our Queens and Brooklyn delegations who fought hard for us, including my Congresswoman, Representative Grace Meng, from the Sixth Congressional District.

This year, we are again asking our members of Congress help us shift the public’s thinking about Alzheimer’s disease. Too often, Alzheimer’s is treated as an aging issue, and the public health consequences of this disease are ignored.

In the United States, someone develops Alzheimer’s every 66 seconds, and with two-thirds of its annual costs being borne by Medicare and Medicaid, it is a pressing issue that demands more attention than ever from our government.

Alzheimer’s is the most expensive disease in America today. Alzheimer’s costs the country more than $259 billion a year, which is why we need the Building Our Largest Dementia (BOLD) Infrastructure for Alzheimer's Act.

If we are going to end Alzheimer’s disease, we must start treating it like the public health threat that it is.

I am asking each of the representatives in Queens and Brooklyn – Joseph Crowley, Grace Meng, Gregory Meeks, Tom Suozzi, Nydia Velazquez, Hakeem Jeffries, Yvette Clarke, Carolyn Maloney, and Jerrold Nadler – to take decisive action by co-sponsoring the BOLD Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act.

Endorsed by the Alzheimer’s Association, the BOLD Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act would create an Alzheimer’s public health infrastructure across the country to implement effective Alzheimer's interventions. including increasing early detection and diagnosis, reducing risk and preventing avoidable hospitalizations.

Join me and my fellow advocates as we fight for the millions of Americans, and their caregivers, affected by Alzheimer’s. Alzheimer's won’t wait and neither can we.

I urge everyone to join me in asking their representatives in Congress to co-sponsor the BOLD Infrastructure for Alzheimer’s Act today.

Eric Renfroe is a resident of Queens.
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