Equip North Carolina 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.
Empower Adult Protective Services Workers with Dementia-Training
Adult Protective Services (APS) workers are on the front lines of protecting older adults from exploitation and harm. Many of the adults they are charged to protect are living with Alzheimer’s or dementia, and it is critical that these workers have the training to understand how to best serve this population. That’s why the Alzheimer’s Association is advocating for APS workers to be trained regarding dementia, communication with individuals, and spotting cases of abuse, neglect or financial exploitation.
Support Dementia Family Caregivers
Over 479,000 North Carolinians are providing unpaid care to loved ones with Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia thus enabling a large portion of the 180,000 people living with dementia in the state to live in the community, instead of moving into more costly residential long-term care. In cases where finances are tight, North Carolina’s state-funded Project CARE steps in with limited but critical respite support. The Program funds can help provide occasional adult day care services or a personal care aide in the home a few times a month allowing the family caregiver to address their own medical issues and complete tasks outside of the home. The Program also provides critical care management and services with dementia-trained family consultants across the state. With the dementia population expected to increase by 16.7% by 2025, the Alzheimer’s Association is calling on state policymakers to approve a 10% increase in funding for Project CARE to support family caregivers.
North Carolina State Plan Overview
In 2014 language was included in North Carolina's budget bill, Senate Bill 744, calling for the development of a state Alzheimer's plan. In March 2015, the North Carolina Institute of Medicine convened a Task Force to develop an Alzheimer's disease strategic plan at the direction of the state department of health. The Task Force was comprised of health care providers, advocates, and other stakeholders who worked together to determine the needs of those with Alzheimer's and other dementias in the state. Dementia-Capable North Carolina: A Strategic Plan for Addressing Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias was published in March 2016.
North Carolina State Advocacy Day
March 11, 2021
Join fellow Alzheimer’s advocates for an exciting day of virtual advocacy urging North Carolina’s state lawmakers to support people with dementia and their families. We will have a series of engaging virtual events with state government leaders to highlight the urgent need for dementia training for direct care workers and to fund critical supports for family caregivers. Our advocacy day will mix storytelling, advocacy training and direct engagement with your state government representatives. And we will all wear purple to unify us in our virtual efforts!