WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s Embraces Senator Collins’ Call to Double Alzheimer’s Research Funding
Prominent Women Activists and Members of Congress Gather for First WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s Summit
WASHINGTON, D.C. – At a Capitol Hill breakfast briefing today, WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s commended Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) for her leadership in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease and her call to double the current level of federal Alzheimer’s research funding.
The briefing, which was part of the inaugural WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s Summit, featured remarks from Collins as well as Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Congresswoman Annie Kuster (D-NH). Collins, Stabenow and Kuster are members of the WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s Honorary Congressional Committee. WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s is the first national network of women in leadership positions working to speed the pace of research and build momentum to end Alzheimer’s disease.
An outspoken Alzheimer’s champion, Senator Collins co-sponsored the National Alzheimer’s Project Act and has been a vocal proponent of doubling research funding for Alzheimer’s. Last month, she and Senator Stabenow introduced the H.O.P.E. for Alzheimer’s Act, which is designed to support newly diagnosed Alzheimer’s patients and their families.
“If we fail to change the current trajectory of Alzheimer's disease, our country will face not only a mounting national health care crisis, but an economic one as well,” said Senator Collins during a Senate Special Committee on Aging hearing in April, adding, “The National Alzheimer's Plan, which will be updated annually, will help us to focus our efforts and accelerate our progress toward better treatments, a means of prevention and ultimately, even a cure.”
“We thank Senator Susan Collins for addressing us today, and commit ourselves to join the Senator's cause to double research funding for Alzheimer's disease,” said Jill Lesser, a founding member of WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s.
“The disproportionate effect of Alzheimer’s on women is staggering; we represent two-thirds of Alzheimer’s patients in the U.S. and 70% of unpaid caregivers,” said Trish Vradenburg, co-founder of USAgainstAlzheimer’s and founding member of WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s. “The current low level of research funding is killing us in more ways than one, and we commend Senator Collins’ call to double our investment in federal biomedical research to find preventive treatments and a cure for Alzheimer’s.”
“Nearly as many women die of Alzheimer's each year as from breast and ovarian cancer combined. When faced with those facts, our call for increased research funding and our own research agenda that looks at sex-based differences between men and women is no-brainer,” added Meryl Comer, president of the Geoffrey Beene Foundation Alzheimer's Initiative, a founding member of WomenAgainstAlzheimer's and 18 year caregiver for her husband and mother. “My greatest fear is that mine will be the family next door in the next decade if we don't take a stand.”
Following the breakfast, the WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s Founders took their advocacy message to Hill offices, where they met with their respective Members of Congress to share their personal stories and their request for a greater investment in Alzheimer’s research for a cure.
WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s is the first national network of women in leadership positions working to speed the pace of research and build real momentum to end Alzheimer’s disease. The WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s network was launched by USAgainstAlzheimer’s, a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to providing organizations and individuals with the information they need to effectively communicate about Alzheimer's to the general public, policy leaders, and the media. For more information about USAgainstAlzheimer’s, please visit http://www.usagainstalzheimers.org/. For more information about WomenAgainstAlzheimer’s, please visit http://www.womenagainstalzheimers.org.