Letter to the Editor: Let’s tell our U.S. representatives to support Alzheimer’s initiatives

Pam Piper

While nearly everyone is likely to be familiar with Alzheimer’s disease because of the skyrocketing prevalence, many people don’t realize that it disproportionately affects older Black and Hispanic Americans versus older whites. Despite being more likely to have the disease, for decades Alzheimer’s research has not included sufficient numbers of Blacks and Latinos — not to mention Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders and Native Americans — to be representative of the U.S. population.

To address this gap, the Equity in Neuroscience and Alzheimer’s Clinical Trials propose to increase the participation of underrepresented populations in Alzheimer’s clinical trials by expanding education and outreach to these populations. The proposition would create a path to better Alzheimer’s care and address shortcomings in the way research and care is currently being delivered to underrepresented communities.

Please join me and the Alzheimer’s Association in thanking U.S. Rep. Joe Neguse of Colorado for supporting the Equity in Neuroscience and Alzheimer’s Clinical Trials Act, and asking U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert to do the same. Equality in Alzheimer’s care is obtainable through taking the following actions: increasing diversity in dementia care, preparing the workforce to care for a racially and ethnically diverse population of older adults, and engaging, recruiting and retaining diverse populations in Alzheimer’s research and clinical trials.

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