Build a Dementia-Capable Workforce
Support Dementia Training for Direct Care Workers
To best serve those with Alzheimer's disease and other dementias, Maryland should have a quality dementia care policy in place that ensures those with Alzheimer's and other dementias receive care from knowledgeable professionals. Maryland regulations currently require two hours of dementia training annually for direct care staff in nursing facilities and assisted living. There are no specific dementia training requirements in regulations governing in-home care providers. Although Adult Day Care regulations require multiple annual in-service trainings, there is no specific requirement or minimum number of hours for dementia training. All individuals employed in the delivery of care in residential, home, and adult day care settings should be properly trained in dementia care practice.
Increase Access to Home and Community-Based Services
Support Legislation and Funding Increases to Remove Waiting Lists for Safety Net Programs
Among individuals with Alzheimer's, 75 percent will be admitted to a nursing home by the age of 80, as compared to only 4 percent of the overall population. As a result, the availability of Medicaid and State-funded home and community-based services is critical for many people with Alzheimer's. While Medicaid spending constitutes one of the largest items in the State budget, State policymakers must ensure that critical benefits are preserved and support is provided to family caregivers. Medicaid provides health services, nursing home care and various home and community-based services for individuals who meet program requirements. Currently the Medicaid Waiver, which enables persons eligible for nursing home admission to receive services at home, has an eight-year waiting list. To ensure families and individuals with Alzheimer's have access to needed services in the most appropriate setting, legislation is needed to require the State to eliminate the waiting list and fully fund the Medicaid Waiver. We will also advocate for increased funding for the expansion of State-funded “safety net” programs.
Advance Alzheimer's Policy
Extend the Term of the Maryland Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Council and Update the Maryland State Plan on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders
In 2012, the first Maryland State Plan on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders was developed. Legislation was passed in 2013 to establish the Maryland Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders (ADRD) Council to oversee the implementation of the Plan. The ADRD Council is scheduled to sunset in 2019. Legislation is needed to extend the term of the ADRD Council for five years, reconfigure the membership of the Council, and task the Council with updating the State Alzheimer's Plan. Alzheimer's and other dementias affect over 110,000 individuals in Maryland. More needs to be done to support prevention and early identification of ADRD, enhance the quality of care, enhance care and support for all affected, raise public awareness, and improve data collection to track progress. An extension of the term of the Council is needed along with a new State Plan that will enable the State to take bold new action to reduce the burden of ADRD in Maryland.
Maryland State Plan Overview
In 2011, Governor Martin O'Malley established the Virginia I. Jones Commission on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders through executive order 01.01.2011.21. The Commission was charged with evaluating the reach of the Alzheimer's disease within the state and make recommendations to address and meet the needs of families impacted by this disease. The Commission included representatives from state agencies, hospital systems, community organizations, and law as well as caregivers, state legislators, individuals directly impacted by Alzheimer's, and health care providers. The Commission published the Maryland State Plan on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders in December 2012.
In October 2013, the Virginia I. Jones Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Council was authorized to continue the work of the Maryland Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders Commission (Chapter 305, Acts of 2013). The Council's charge includes developing and monitoring the 2012 Maryland State Plan on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders devised by the Commission. In reviewing State statutes, policies, and programs, the Council is to improve and enhance quality of life and support, and services for individuals living with Alzheimer's Disease and related disorders, and their families, by promoting and expanding the availability and accessibility of home- and community-based support and service programs. Originally to report by September 30, 2016, authorization for the Council was extended to September 30, 2019, and three members were added to the Council (Chapter 75, Acts of 2016).
Maryland State Advocacy Day
February 21, 2019
Join us for the Alzheimer's Association Maryland Advocacy Day on Thursday, February 21, 2019. Learn about state public policy issues that are related to Alzheimer's and other dementias, what's at stake and how to advocate with legislators and their staff.
2020 Advocacy Forum
March 22-24, 2020 alz.org/forum
As an Alzheimer's advocate, you've worked to advance critical public policy, making a difference in the lives of all those impacted by Alzheimer's. Together we've achieved great increases in federal Alzheimer's research funding and secured critical advances in care and support. But we can't take our successes for granted — we need to keep the pressure on.
Join us in Washington for an inspiring three-day event filled with networking, training and education.
Be part of the movement that's making a difference in the fight against Alzheimer's.
Sign Up to Learn More About Advocacy Opportunities in Maryland
State Affairs Contact Ilene Rosenthal | 410-561-9099, x2 | [email protected]
Enter your address here to see your elected officials' positions on Alzheimer's and ways you can contact them to support the Alzheimer's community.
Number of People Aged 65 and Older With Alzheimer's by Age
Percentage change from 2019
Medicaid costs of caring for people with Alzheimer's (2019)
change in costs from 2019 to 2025
per capita Medicare spending on people with dementia (in 2018 dollars)
of people in hospice have a primary diagnosis of dementia
of people in hospice with a primary diagnosis of dementia
of emergency department visits per 1,000 people with dementia
dementia patient hospital readmission rate
Number of Caregivers
Total Hours of Unpaid Care
Total Value of Unpaid Care
Higher Health Costs of Caregivers
For more information, view the 2019 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures report at alz.org/facts.
Over 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's, and as many as 14 million will have the disease in 2050. The cost of caring for those with Alzheimer's and other dementias is estimated to total $290 billion in 2019, increasing to $1.1 trillion (in today's dollars) by mid-century. Nearly one in every three seniors who dies each year has Alzheimer's or another dementia.