West Virginia


Empower First Responders with Dementia Training

First responders are critical to the health and safety of people living with Alzheimer’s. They frequently interact with individuals who have dementia in a variety of settings and are among the first to observe instances of abuse and neglect. Without proper training on how to recognize the signs of dementia and how to effectively communicate with people with dementia, situations may escalate quickly with potentially dangerous consequences. The Alzheimer’s Association is calling on legislators to support forthcoming legislation in West Virginia that will require dedicated dementia-specific training for emergency medical services workers to educate these professionals on understanding specific behavior symptoms, effective communication strategies, protocols for contacting caregivers and available local resources.

West Virginia State Plan Overview

In 2011, the West Virginia legislature directed and funded the Joint Committee on Government and Finance to study the needs, challenges, and issues facing West Virginians living with Alzheimer's disease and their families through the passage of Senate Concurrent Resolution 38. Three work groups spearheaded development of policy and program recommendations. The work groups included health care providers, families impacted by Alzheimer's, public health officials, state legislators, and researchers as well as representatives from local businesses, long-term care providers, state agencies, and community organizations. In December 2011, the state Alzheimer's plan, Make a Plan for Alzheimer's in West Virginia was published.


West Virginia State Advocacy Day

February 16, 2022

West Virginia's Alzheimer’s advocates from across the state are encouraged to join us on Wednesday, February 16, 2022 to share their stories with elected officials in support of our legislation to strengthen dementia training standards for first responders. Advocates will meet with West Virginia Senators and Delegates to urge their support for this critical legislation to protect people living with Alzheimer's and other dementia and to better equip first responders when they encounter individuals living with dementia. First time advocates are encouraged to join! We will be providing training sessions in the days leading up to our State Advocacy Day so that you will be prepared and ready to conduct meetings with your legislators.

Sign Up to Learn More About Advocacy Opportunities in West Virginia

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

State Affairs Contact David Zielonka | 2029813786 [email protected]

Alzheimer's Facts and Figures in West Virginia

Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures, an annual report released by the Alzheimer's Association®, reveals the burden of Alzheimer's and dementia on individuals, caregivers, government and the nation's health care system.


woman holding glasses


Individuals living with Alzheimer's in West Virginia

This number is projected to increase 12.8% between 2020 and 2025.

Nationally, there are more than 6 million Americans living with Alzheimer's. This number is expected to more than double by 2050.



Deaths from Alzheimer's in West Virginia in 2019

couple hugging on bench

There were 347 more deaths than expected from Alzheimer's and dementia during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, 19% higher than average.


caregiver hugging

Value of unpaid care work

Hours of unpaid care

Nationally, Alzheimer's and dementia caregivers provided nearly $257 billion in unpaid care in 2021. In West Virginia, there are 72,000 dementia caregivers, who each provide an average of 36 hours of unpaid care per week




per capita Medicare spending on people with dementia



Medicaid costs of caring for people with Alzheimer's in 2020

Hospice and Hospitals


# of people in hospice with a primary diagonsis of dementia


# of emergency department visits per 1,000 people with dementia

People with Alzheimer's disease have twice as many hospital stays per year as other older people. Nationally, emergency department visits for those with dementia have increased nearly 30% over the past decade.

The 2021 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures report contains data on the impact of Alzheimer's on the nation and in every state across the country.
Visit alz.org/facts to view the full report.