Protect People with Dementia From Abuse and Neglect
People with Alzheimer’s and other dementias are at heightened risk for experiencing elder abuse. Older adults with dementia are especially susceptible to abuse — as many as 62% of them experience psychological abuse and as many as one-fourth have been physically abused. However, Iowa lacks a comprehensive structure to protect Iowans with dementia who are victims of abuse. The Alzheimer’s Association is calling on Iowa lawmakers to support legislation that will specify the penalties for elder abuse and procedures for how these cases should be prosecuted.
Increase Access to Care by Growing Iowa’s Direct Care Workforce
Iowa is struggling with a shortage of direct care workers which greatly impacts people with dementia and their family caregivers. Too often, families are struggling to balance the responsibilities of caregiving while maintaining their own job or health. In long-term care settings, insufficient numbers of direct care workers risks challenging the provision of high quality care. The Alzheimer’s Association supports efforts to solidify the direct care workforce by establishing certification portability and a registry to connect available direct care workers and employing agencies and families.
Equip Iowa with a Dementia-Capable Workforce
Individuals with Alzheimer’s and other dementia have unique needs that often make care delivery, communication and interaction more challenging and demanding. Direct care workers in long-term care settings and adult day settings often do not have sufficient dementia-specific knowledge to effectively support those living with the disease. The Alzheimer’s Association is calling on state policymakers to ensure all direct care workers receive dementia-specific training following a culturally competent training curriculum that incorporates the principles of person-centered care to best address the needs of care recipients with dementia. With many people living with dementia in Iowa without a formal diagnosis, all direct care workers must receive dementia training in order to ensure the provision of high quality care.
Protect Residents In Long Term Care Settings by Mitigating the Risk of COVID-19 and Addressing Social Isolation
The COVID-19 pandemic is disproportionately affecting individuals with Alzheimer’s and other dementia, and is creating pressing challenges for long-term care (LTC) communities and residents, where people living with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias represent a large proportion of LTC residents. There are also growing concerns that social isolation among people with dementia has contributed to individual decline and stress among family caregivers who cannot assess the health of their loved ones. To best support individuals living with Alzheimer’s and dementia during the pandemic, the Alzheimer’s Association has released a comprehensive set of long-term care policy recommendations for lawmakers focused on testing, reporting, surge activation, and providing support. The Alzheimer’s Association will continue to urge state policymakers to prioritize long-term care in the COVID-19 response.
Iowa State Plan Overview
In 2007, the Iowa Legislature established a task force through the enactment of Senate File 489 to assess the current and future impact of Alzheimer's disease on residents, examine the existing resource available, and develop a strategy to mobilize a state response to the growing threat of Alzheimer's disease. The task force included representatives from the long-term care industry, community organizations, and state agencies as well as state legislators, caregivers, and individuals directly impacted by Alzheimer's. After collecting testimony from advocacy groups and individuals to inform the plan's recommendations, the task force published the Final Report: Alzheimer's Disease Task Force in January 2008.
Iowa State Advocacy Day
February 08, 2021
Join us for Alzheimer's Advocacy Week as we kick off our week on Monday, February 8th with a virtual training at 12:00 noon. Receive updates on our legislative priorities, learn how to engage with your legislators and report your results. Connect with your legislators with activities during the week and share your experience during a wrap up meeting on Thursday, February 11th at 1:30.