Nebraska

NEWS

The Alzheimer's Association Nebraska Chapter is supporting or watching several pieces of legislation during the 2019-2020 Unicameral Sessions. Click here to see the latest updates on these bills.

NEBRASKA 2019 STATE POLICY PRIORITIES

Increase Public Awareness, Early Detection And Diagnosis

Provide Healthcare Professionals with Tools to Improve Detection and Diagnosis of Alzheimer's

Early detection and diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease 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 the Medicare billing code for care planning.

Increase Public Awareness, Early Detection And Diagnosis

Make Alzheimer's Disease Our Next Public Health Success Story

Public health campaigns, such as those around tobacco cessation, have made a significant impact on the health and wellness of Nebraska's citizens. Alzheimer's disease is an urgent public health issue. Currently, more than 34,000 Nebraskans are living with Alzheimer's disease, and that number is expected to rise to 40,000 by 2025. By conducting awareness campaigns about reducing the risk of dementia, identifying early warning signs, and the importance of early detection and diagnosis, the Department of Health and Human Services can help change the course of Alzheimer's disease in Nebraska. We urge DHHS to include funding for Alzheimer's awareness campaigns in their budget requests to the Governor.

Increase Access to Home and Community-Based Services

Enact Policies to Support Dementia Caregivers

In 2017, 82,000 Nebraskans provided more than $1.18 billion worth of uncompensated care for family members or loved ones living with Alzheimer's disease. Nationwide, 35% of dementia caregivers report their health has worsened due to caregiving responsibilities, and as many as 40% report symptoms of depression. 57% say they have had to go in late, leave early, or take time off of work because of their caregiving responsibilities. LB 306 would add "caring for a family member with a serious health condition" to the list of reasons which are considered good cause for voluntarily leaving employment under employment security law, allowing caregivers to remain eligible for unemployment benefits once they are ready to return to work. LB 311, the Paid Family and Medical Leave Insurance Act would enable caregivers to take time off of work to care for a loved one with a serious health condition like Alzheimer's, without having to lose their job or go without pay. LB69 would allow qualified caregivers to claim a credit of $300 on their Nebraska taxes. This legislation would ease the financial burden on families living with an Alzheimer's diagnosis, and allow them to take advantage of additional services to improve the care of their loved ones. We urge the Unicameral to pass these pieces of legislation and support dementia caregivers across Nebraska.

Advance Alzheimer's Policy

Conduct an Interim Study on the Creation of an Alzheimer's and Dementia Registry in Nebraska

More and better information is needed about the scope of the Alzheimer's epidemic in Nebraska. Currently, our state has disease registries for cancer, Parkinson's disease, and brain injuries. These registries allow for the collection and sharing of essential information about the prevalence of these diseases in order to improve patient outcomes. We advocate for an interim study to be conducted in the 2019 session on the creation of an Alzheimer's and dementia registry in Nebraska.



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 Alzheimer’s Advocacy Day is your chance to meet face-to-face with elected officials to discuss Alzheimer’s disease 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 Tuesday, March 10 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! Additional details and registration information will be posted on the Advocacy page of the Nebraska Chapter website.


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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