Alzheimer’s Foundation of America Hosts Free Conference in Phoenix

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Arizona is home to the fastest growing rate of Alzheimer’s in the U.S. The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America is hosting a free conference on Feb 16th so Phoenix area residents can learn about healthy aging tips, early detection, and other Alzheimer’s-related topics. They will also be conducting free memory screenings throughout the day. We were joined by Dana Marie Kennedy, State of Director of AARP-Arizona and Dr. Jeremy Pruzin of the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute.

What is the conference?

“It is a half-day long conference, there will be a lot of different speakers. I’m actually going to be talking about aging in place with dementia, and I’ll be walking families through as well as caregivers through how to develop a road map and what that would look like if you do get a diagnoses of dementia,” said Kennedy.

The conference overall is focused on discussing the different aspects of both dementia and Alzheimer’s in order to help guide those who are diagnosed and their families.

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What is the research on Alzheimer’s?

“We’re still at the very beginnings here, but we’ve really made some huge steps forward. For one, we can detect changes, look for markers of alterations of the process through the blood and spinal fluid, and even predict how when symptoms are going to come on with these tests,” said Dr. Pruzin.

He also mentioned that a recent trial came out of a drug that can help slow the progression of this disease,” which is actually the first time, without controversy, that this has happened in the field,” said Pruzin.

Are we supposed to live where we can get the best care?

“I think that a lot of people think that if you get diagnosed with dementia you need to be in a skilled nursing facility, but there are so many resources available now. AARP is just chock full of great information to develop our road map, and it’s never too early to start thinking about how you want to age in place,” said Kennedy.

Home modifications should also be considered in order to further provide the necessary aid for those diagnosed.

Dana Marie Kennedy/State Director, AARP Arizona , Dr. Jeremy Pruzin/Assoc. Professor of Neurology, University of Arizona College of Medicine & Behavioral Neurologist, Banner Alzheimer’s Institute

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