Medicare to Pay for Cognitive Assessment and Care Planning for Persons with Alzheimer's Disease

Care planning benefit now available for those living with Alzheimer's disease...

WASHINGTON, D.C., November 3, 2016 –  The Alzheimer’s Impact Movement (AIM) is celebrating the final decision by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to improve access to care and support for the millions of Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease. CMS released today final language of a new service to provide those living with Alzheimer’s disease to receive comprehensive care planning through a medical visit. This announcement comes after growing bipartisan support in Congress for the AIM and Alzheimer’s Association-supported Health Outcomes, Planning, and Education (HOPE) for Alzheimer’s Act (S. 857, H.R. 1559).

“On behalf of the millions of Americans living with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers, we thank CMS for expanding access to critical care planning information and services that may improve quality of life for the individual, their family, and caregiver,” said AIM Executive Director Robert Egge. “This new service provides medical professionals with the opportunity to provide essential support for those facing this devastating and fatal disease.”

Only about half of those with Alzheimer’s disease have been diagnosed, and of those who have been diagnosed, only 45% of them or their caregivers are aware of the diagnosis. One of the reasons physicians do not diagnose Alzheimer’s disease – or do not disclose a diagnosis once it is made – is because of the lack of time and resources to provide information and support to patients and caregivers.
Understanding that access to care planning services leads to better outcomes for individuals with Alzheimer’s, AIM, along with the Alzheimer’s Association, has supported the HOPE for Alzheimer’s Act since its introduction, and has worked closely with CMS to grow support for this new service.

Today the House bill has 307 co-sponsors, and the Senate bill has 57 cosponsors and was incorporated into the the Senate funding bill which passed the Senate Appropriations Committee in June.

“We thank the hundreds of members of Congress who have shown their support improving access to care and support services. Particularly lead sponsors Sens. Stabenow (D-MI), Collins (R-ME), Markey (D-MA), and Capito (R-WV), and Reps. Smith (R-NJ) and Waters (D-CA),” continued Egge. “Thanks to your support millions of Americans have the opportunity to better manage this devastating disease.”

For more information on the Alzheimer’s Impact Movement, visit alzimpact.org.

Alzheimer's Association®
The Alzheimer's Association is the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer's care, support and research. Our mission is to eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer's. For more information, visit alz.org.

Alzheimer's Impact Movement
The Alzheimer's Impact Movement (AIM) is a separately incorporated advocacy affiliate of the Alzheimer's Association. AIM works to develop and advance policies to overcome Alzheimer's disease through increased investment in research, enhanced care and improved support. For more information, visit alzimpact.org.

Contact:
Laura Cilmi, 202.638.8673, [email protected]