Click HERE to read Senator Collins’ opening statement
Click HERE to read Senator Casey’s opening statement
Washington, D.C.—Every 65 seconds, someone in the U.S. develops Alzheimer’s disease. By 2050, this rate will double to every 33 seconds unless we take action.
In order to provide insights on promising directions in Alzheimer’s research and models of care to help those living with the disease, U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Bob Casey, the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Senate Aging Committee, held a hearing today titled, “Alzheimer’s: New Directions in Biomedical Research and Caregiving.”
“The robust funding that Congress has provided is enabling scientists to explore a myriad of new pathways that could lead to earlier detection and potential therapies. From the ocular and the cardiovascular, to the genome and the microbiome, to the immune and the lymphatic systems, researchers are leaving no system unexamined and no cell unturned,” said Senator Collins, a founder and co-chair of the Congressional Task Force on Alzheimer's Disease. “From accelerating research to advancing care, every year that we gather as one ‘sea of purple,’ we make waves. While Alzheimer’s robs our loved ones of precious memories, I will continue to do everything I can to make Alzheimer’s itself a memory one day.”
“Alzheimer’s disease impacts different communities differently, so research and clinical trials must include people who are diagnosed at younger ages, people with disabilities, racial and ethnic minorities and people living in rural areas,” said Senator Casey. “We must tackle this disease from every angle—including continuing research for a cure and ensuring medical professionals and community organizations can provide the best care possible to every single population.”
In light of two recent disappointing Alzheimer’s drug failures, experts at the hearing described promising research areas. Witnesses also discussed caregiving supports and care planning to help improve outcomes and quality of life for individuals and families facing Alzheimer’s.
The rate of Americans dying from dementia has more than doubled in the United States since the year 2000. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common form of dementia, and the risk increases with age. An estimated 5.8 million Americans are currently living with Alzheimer’s. If we continue along this trajectory, Alzheimer’s is projected to affect nearly 14 million Americans and surpass $1 trillion in costs by 2050.
This hearing was held in conjunction with the Alzheimer’s Association’s annual advocacy forum, which brings more than 1,000 advocates from around the country to Washington, D.C.
Click HERE to read their testimonies.