Addressing Alzheimer's: DE Releases Plan To Deal With Disease - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Addressing Alzheimer's: DE Releases Plan To Deal With Disease

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GEORGETOWN, Del. - On a sunny Tuesday afternoon, several seniors take turns at knocking down virtual pins.

It's apart of their daily routine at the Cheer Center. Nine of those 10 men and women suffer from Alzheimer's disease.

"The main thing we do is what they want to do," said Beth Seeds.

Seeds runs the adult day care program at CHEER. She says less than a year ago those same people now bowling strikes and painting pictures were once silent.

"We hear from the families how different they are and how happy they are," said Seeds.

This daycare program is just one of three in Sussex County, according to CHEER deputy director Ken Bock.

"It helps sort of enhance the quality of family life for anyone that's been touched by Alzheimer's or dementia," said Bock.

Now, the program is becoming a stepping stone as part of Delaware's plans to combat Alzheimer's and dementia. State health officials announced their five goals for their plans on Tuesday afternoon:

  • Increasing the awareness and understanding of Alzheimer's disease and related disorders.
  • Bringing focused attention to the development of long-term care services for individuals with Alzheimer's disease.
  • Strengthening support for caregivers.
  • Improving the capacity of Delaware's workforce to respond to the needs of individuals with Alzheimer's disease.
  • Increasing Delaware's capacity for Alzheimer's disease-related research and data collection.

But the Department of Health and Social Services secretary Rita Landgraf says the problem continues to grow. By 2030, the first state is expected to be in the top-10 nationwide for residents ages 65 and older.

Which is why Delaware hopes to strengthen support for caregivers like Seeds and improve the response to the needs of those suffering from this disease.

Delaware's plan to fight Alzheimer's is expected to take five years to fully implement.

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