Tonight, a new documentary about Alzheimer’s is airing for the first time. Dementia Friendly America – an organization that LeadingAge works closely with – played a significant role in the film’s production. Here is background information about it. We hope you will tune in! Go to PBS to get viewing details.
Many know the unique tragedy of this disease, but few know that Alzheimer’s is one of the most critical public health crises facing America. This powerful documentary illuminates the social and economic consequences for the country unless a medical breakthrough is discovered for this currently incurable disease.
There are now over five million Americans with Alzheimer’s disease. Because of the growing number of aging baby boomers, and the fact that the onset of Alzheimer’s is primarily age-related, the number of Americans with Alzheimer’s is projected to rise by 55% by 2030, and by 2050 the Alzheimer’s Association estimates the total number could explode to nearly 14 million.
This “tsunami” of Alzheimer’s will not only be a profound human tragedy, but an overwhelming economic one as well. Due to the length of time people live with the illness and need care, it’s the most expensive medical condition in the U.S. Future costs for Alzheimer’s threaten to bankrupt Medicare, Medicaid, and the life savings of millions of Americans. It is estimated that if the number of patients increases as projected in the years ahead, the costs to care for them will exceed $1.1 trillion.
With power and passion, Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts weaves together expert commentary with compelling personal stories filmed around the country that represent previews of the future happening today. The one-hour documentary will be accompanied by community engagement, education, and social media initiatives that will extend its reach and impact far beyond broadcast – to educate the public about the crisis as well as provide on-the-ground support to help those who already have Alzheimer’s.
Go to http://www.pbs.org/tpt/alzheimers-every-minute-counts/home/ to get viewing details.