WOONSOCKET, R.I. — The CVS Health Foundation is making a $550,000 grant to the Alzheimer’s Association to boost its support for a new program to enhance disease diagnosis and assessment with clinicians and to educate them about care and support programs to help families.
CVS said the grant, which is being shared with six local Alzheimer’s Association chapters, raises the foundation’s total contribution to more than $1 million since 2016.
The funds extent the CVS Health Foundation’s support a program launched in 2016 to increase diagnosis, disclosure and education for Alzheimer’s disease. The six local chapters that have benefited from this support have shown significant progress in partnering with health care providers to bolster their ability to detect, diagnose and care for people living with the disease and their caregivers, according to the foundation.
For example, more than 7,000 clinicians were educated on prevention, diagnosis, therapeutics and research related to Alzheimer’s disease. The education was conducted in person and via micro-learnings, CME events, office visits, staff trainings and multimedia campaigns. The six chapters also increased patient referrals to the Alzheimer’s Association’s care and support resources from clinical health professionals by 61% after diagnosis.
In addition, CVS said, each local chapter expanded their internal capacity through hiring of new staff, more training for current staff and better use of volunteers. As a result, the chapters reached more clinicians, patients and caregivers affected by Alzheimer’s disease.
“The CVS Health Foundation is proud to support the Alzheimer’s Association in its effort to ensure that patients and caregivers receive the resources they need following an Alzheimer’s diagnosis and are able to maintain a high-quality of life,” Eileen Howard Boone, president of the CVS Health Foundation, said in a statement. “We’ve seen significant results following the first year of the program and look forward to working with the Alzheimer’s Association to continue to fulfill our program’s mission.”
With the additional support from the CVS Health Foundation, the Central and North Florida, Desert Southwest, Greater Illinois, Massachusetts/New Hampshire, Northern California/Northern Nevada and Greater Missouri chapters of the Alzheimer’s Association will continue their work to extend health provider outreach and expand the automatic referral process for education and care consultations, with the goal of increasing the number of people in each chapter with access to care.
The number of people with Alzheimer’s disease is projected to rise from more than 5 million currently to over 16 million by 2050, with costs slated to rise as much as $1.1 trillion. Research shows that effective health provider outreach and education are key to helping people with Alzheimer’s disease achieve better quality of life, the foundation noted.
“The Alzheimer’s Association greatly appreciates CVS Health Foundation’s generous support of the Diagnose, Disclose and Direct Connect Pilot Grant program,” stated Beth Kallmyer, vice president of care and support for the Alzheimer’s Association. “The grants have been instrumental in launching innovative programs that are influencing provider behavior in terms of detecting and diagnosing dementia as well as educating physicians about the programs available for individuals and families impacted by this devastating disease.”