Bill emphasizes coordinated treatment and training
Today, the House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill aimed at improving the treatment of individuals with Alzheimer’s disease.
There are currently more than 120,000 people in the commonwealth with Alzheimer's, a number that is expected to grow. Beyond that, there are over 6,000 people living with dementia in Massachusetts, comprising 25% of the people in hospice. One in three seniors will die of Alzheimer's or related dementia this year, making it the sixth most common cause of death.
The House’s legislation aims to better address this public health crisis through coordination and planning. It directs the Executive Office of Health and Human Services to develop an integrated state plan to address Alzheimer's disease, focusing on steps that can be taken to holistically address care and treatment. It regulates elder protective services and extends training to those working with our most vulnerable elder populations.
It also mandates the Department of Elder Affairs require its agencies to train caseworkers on the signs/symptoms of cognitive impairments. Our bill ensures that physicians, physician’s assistants, and nurses, serving adult populations complete a one-time course on patients with cognitive impairments.
Alzheimer’s has affected all of us in one way or another. Here in Massachusetts, we pride ourselves on our innovation and dedication to healthcare. Today’s bill ensures we continue this commitment.