Nebraska

NEBRASKA 2020 STATE POLICY PRIORITIES

Increase Public Awareness, Early Detection And Diagnosis

Promote Early Detection and Diagnosis of Dementia

Early detection and diagnosis of dementia can greatly reduce healthcare costs and allow families earlier access to care resources. State and local health departments play an important role in providing healthcare practitioners with the tools and education necessary for early detection and diagnosis. We urge the Department of Health and Human Services to issue guidance to physicians on the importance of early detection and diagnosis, as well as the use of resources such as cognitive assessments during Medicare Annual Wellness Visits and Medicare CPT code 99483 for care planning assistance.

Increase Public Awareness, Early Detection And Diagnosis

Incorporate Brain Health Into Existing Public Heath Campaigns

While there is currently no way to prevent, slow, or cure Alzheimer’s disease, research has shown that there are a number of simple ways for people to reduce their future risk of cognitive decline. Healthy eating, staying active, quitting smoking, and controlling blood pressure are all ways to mind your brain health. By incorporating brain health information into existing campaigns and programs such as Partners N Health, the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services can help Nebraskans reduce their risk of cognitive decline.

Increase Public Awareness, Early Detection And Diagnosis

Promote Data-Driven Alzheimer’s Policy Decisions

Support and fund the continued collection of data related to cognitive decline and caregiver stress through the state's annual Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) survey, in order to develop policies and programs to assist Nebraskans living with a dementia diagnosis.

Build a Dementia-Capable Workforce

Ensure a Dementia-Capable Workforce for Nebraska

The University of Nebraska Omaha’s Center for Public Affairs Research projects that by 2025, more than 18.5% of Nebraska’s population will be over 65. As of 2017, there were only 22 certified geriatricians in the state of Nebraska, which, in 2000, was ranked the 11th “oldest” state in the country. Nebraska’s policymakers must make the development of a “dementia-capable” workforce a priority by creating and enhancing incentives for students and professionals to pursue degrees and positions in gerontology and dementia care, especially in rural and under-served areas in central and western Nebraska.

Enhance the Quality of Care in Residential Settings

Ensure the Availability of Quality Dementia Care Across Nebraska

Average annual per-person Medicaid spending for seniors with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias is more than 23 times higher than for those without dementia. Unfortunately, Medicaid reimbursement rates for care facilities ioften do not reflect this higher cost of care. As a result, many facilities face significant budget shortfalls, which has led to a series of facility closures across Nebraska in recent years. As Nebraska's Department of Health and Human Services works to revise provider reimbursement rate methodologies, any changes must take into account the dire need for quality dementia care across Nebraska.

Advance Alzheimer's Policy

Establish a Statewide Alzheimer’s and Dementia Registry in Nebraska

In 2016, the Nebraska Unicameral and Governor Ricketts presented the Nebraska State Plan for Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias. Included in the State Plan was the recommendation to create an Alzheimer’s/dementia registry, to facilitate research, inform the creation of policies and programs related to dementia, assist in the coordination of public health efforts, and simplify the delivery of information and services to Nebraskans living with a dementia diagnosis. We urge the Nebraska Unicameral to approve the creation of a statewide Alzheimer’s/dementia registry, to help Nebraska take the next step in addressing Alzheimer’s as a public health crisis.



Nebraska State Plan Overview

In May 2015, Governor Pete Ricketts signed LB320 calling for the formation of State Plan on Alzheimer's disease and related disorders. The legislation charges the Aging Nebraskans Task Force with assessing existing resources in the state, developing recommendations to meet the growing needs of those affected by Alzheimer's, and to develop strategies to identify gaps in community services. The Task Force included representatives from state agencies, long-term care organizations, elder law, and community organizations as well as economists, seniors, caregivers, and aging advocates. The Nebraska State Plan for Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias was published in June 2016. A State Plan Infographic is available here.



ADVOCACY EVENTS

Nebraska State Advocacy Day

March 10, 2020

Nebraska's Alzheimer’s State Advocacy Day is your chance to meet face-to-face with state legislators to discuss Alzheimer’s and its impact in Nebraska, share your personal story of how Alzheimer’s has impacted your life, and make strategic requests of state policymakers. Join us on this exciting day as we gather at the Capitol, DRESSED IN PURPLE, to show our elected officials how many Nebraskans are impacted by Alzheimer's disease. Let's turn the Capitol purple! Click here to register: https://act.alz.org/site/Calendar/393259474?view=Detail&id=129257


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 Nebraska


Sign me up to participate in the upcoming State Advocacy Day!

State Affairs Contact Terry Streetman | (402) 616-2758 | [email protected]



Elected Officials

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.



Alzheimer's Facts and Figures in Nebraska

Number of People Aged 65 and Older With Alzheimer's by Age

Year 65-74 75-84 85+ TOTAL
* Totals may not add due to rounding
2019 4,800 14,000 16,000 34,000
2025 5,800 17,000 16,000 40,000

Percentage change from 2019

Medicaid

$361

MILLION

Medicaid costs of caring for people with Alzheimer's (2019)

12.6%

change in costs from 2019 to 2025


Medicare

$20,251

per capita Medicare spending on people with dementia (in 2018 dollars)


HOSPICE (2016)

1,544

#

of people in hospice have a primary diagnosis of dementia


18%

of people in hospice with a primary diagnosis of dementia

Hospitals (2015)

1,092

#

of emergency department visits per 1,000 people with dementia


16.8%

dementia patient hospital readmission rate

Caregiving

83,000

Number of Caregivers

94,000,000

Total Hours of Unpaid Care

$1,190,000,000

Total Value of Unpaid Care

$63,000,000

Higher Health Costs of Caregivers

Number of Deaths from Alzheimer's Disease (2017)

698

6th leading cause of death in Nebraska

For more information, view the 2019 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures report at alz.org/facts.


U.S. Statistics

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.



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