Monday, June 10, 2019

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Legislators Urged to Invest in Policies that Address Alzheimer's Disease

Advocates are urging legislators to invest in policies that address Alzheimer's Disease.

To the editor,

Alzheimer's disease is the 6th leading cause of death in the country and the only one among the top 10 without a cure.  There are nearly 400,000 Pennsylvanians living with the disease, along with almost 700,000 caregivers providing unpaid care for them right here in Pennsylvania.  As if these numbers aren't daunting enough, Alzheimer's also ranks as America's most expensive disease.

I am very passionate about this disease because it took ahold of my Grandmother at an early age.  Which impacted me and my whole family.

I recently went to Harrisburg, along with Renee Buchanan, Phyllis Gallagher, and Kristie Ondisco, for the Alzheimer's Associations 2019 PA Advocacy Day to meet with Senator David Argall and Senator John Blake and share the impact Alzheimer's has on the public health.  We reminded them at that they have the ability to change the course of this devastating disease.  Specifically, we asked them to support legislation that would better protect older Pennsylvanians from abuse, neglect, and exploitation.  We also asked them to support Senate Bill 277 and House Bill 51, both of which would provide timely access to support services allowing those living with the disease to remain in their home and active in the community for as long as possible, and would provide support for their caregivers.

Please join me in urging Senator Argall and Senator Blake to invest policies that address Alzheimer's disease as the public-health crisis it is.

To learn more about this disease and how you can join the fight to end Alzheimer's, please contact Desiree Dunleavy @ (570) 985-3562 or email

Thank you,
Desiree Dunleavy
Chair of the Alzheimer's Association Walk of Schuylkill County

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