For individuals living with Alzheimer's and their caregivers, care planning is essential to learning about medical and non-medical treatments, clinical trials, and support services available in their community. Accessing these services results in a higher quality of life.
People who receive dementia-specific care planning have fewer hospitalizations, fewer emergency room visits, and better medication management. Alzheimer's and related dementias complicate the management of other chronic conditions, and care planning is key to care coordination and managing those other conditions.
Thankfully, Medicare covers care planning for individuals with cognitive impairment. However, patients and medical providers are often not aware of this resource. AIM is working with bipartisan Congressional champions on the Improving HOPE for Alzheimer's Act (S. 880/H.R. 1873). The bill would educate clinicians on Alzheimer's and dementia care planning services through Medicare. This will give them the knowledge and tools to better help their patients and families living with dementia.
AIM is leading the way to advance policies to improve access to quality health care services for individuals living with Alzheimer's disease. The health care system, as it exists today, all too often fails both those living with dementia and their caregivers. Because of AIM’s efforts with the Alzheimer’s Association, addressing the shortcomings through better policies is now front and center on Capitol Hill and in federal agencies.
Specifically, the Improving HOPE for Alzheimer’s Act would require the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to:
In December 2020 this bill was signed into law.