As Montanans prepare to address the challenges associated with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, we want to assure that:
All Montanans are aware of and comfortable talking about aging issues and topics inherent to the aging process including of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias, legal and financial issues, preparation for end of life care, the need to create aging and dementia friendly communities, and where to find resources and support. Furthermore, the citizens of Montana are aware of how to reduce the risk of dementia, the early signs and progression of the disease, the value and importance of caregivers, and the need for first responders, advocates and citizens to be able to detect and competently support these individuals. Individuals with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias participate in decision-making to the best of their ability, remain independent as long as possible, and receive dignified, high quality, person- centered care throughout their lives regardless of where they live, their financial status, culture, or gender identity. They are aware of opportunities to participate in research and clinical trials. Family caregivers experience support as they care for family members with dementia throughout the disease trajectory, are valued for the work that they do, and receive person-centered care for themselves. Health care providers use evidence-based practices to diagnose and manage Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias effectively. They recognize the benefit of early disease detection, a multidisciplinary team approach to care, and early referral to community resources and support. Montana health care providers exist as a work force in adequate numbers, and are valued for the work they do caring for individuals with these complex diseases. Montana policy makers and state officials understand the public health crisis Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias present, including:
The financial impacts and potential burdens to Montana’s citizens and communities.
The need to be prepared to implement policies and systems to strengthen the quality of care provided.
The need to sustain the ability of individuals with dementia to live independently as long as possible.
The need to support research that proposes innovative ways to more effectively detect, prevent, manage, and support this vulnerable population.